FEMALE soccer referees in Spain have gone on strike over demands for increased pay.

The match official’s made their move late on Thursday with the domestic women’s league due to start its first round of matches on Saturday.

In a statement, the referees said they had ‘taken the decision to not work any matches of the women’s first division under the present working and economic conditions’.

It’s the first season of a fully professional women’s league in Spain, after its players campaigned for years for better working conditions and pay.

But the referees say they have not been treated the same way.

They claim the €320 paid to referees and the €160 euros payout to assistants per match is s not enough.

“We want to get back on the field, but under the appropriate conditions,” their statement read.

The women’s league responded by saying that it had presented a plan to the Spanish soccer federation to increase their salaries but has yet to receive a reply.

The league added that if the referees did not show up for work they would face ‘legal and disciplinary action’.

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