Former world-class swimmer Franziska van Almsick thinks the discussion about equal pay for athletes in football is too excited and currently inappropriate.

“I want to emancipate myself as a woman without being an emancipate.

Sometimes the roar is too big for me and it all goes a tad too fast.

I would like it to be a bit more sustainable,” said the multiple world and European champion at the “Neuland” future congress in Aachen on Wednesday.

In the US, women soccer players have won a historic collective bargaining agreement that guarantees them equal pay.

But you can't compare that, said the 44-year-old: "Women's football has a completely different status in the USA - and men's football too.

He's above everything here with us," she said: "Sometimes we overpace and just throw slogans out.

I find that difficult.

We are on the right track, but everything has to go step by step.”

The DFB women do not want to join the corresponding demands at the moment.

"It is also true that the marketing revenues of men and women, which also result in the tournament bonuses, are extremely different in the Bundesliga and the national teams," said national coach Martina Voss-Tecklenburg.

Thomas Müller sees the differences

National soccer player Thomas Müller can understand the same pay for women and men in US soccer, but sees it as difficult to apply in Germany.

"In America, the women's soccer team is the much stronger horse and maybe even moves more crowds," said the offensive star of FC Bayern Munich, also at the "Neuland" future congress.

"When it comes to money, it's about how much revenue the product brings.

And accordingly, the flow of money goes into the product,” said Müller.

That has “less to do with performance.

We footballers get more money than basketball and handball players.

But not because we play football better than basketball and handball, but because luckily most people in the world love football.”

Where the development of women's football in Germany will go is not foreseeable.

"Of course, sports policy can support it, but in the end it's the customer who decides where to go and where not," said Müller: "We have teams with Wolfsburg or Bayern Munich, who always cut a good figure in the Champions League, that's cool .

But I don't know why women's football is less popular in the stadiums than men's.”

The 32-year-old explained that he was keeping his fingers crossed for the women's national team at the European Championships in England, which began on July 6: "Like us in Qatar, we can win the title, but we're not among the top favourites.

When I was a teenager, we were always among the top favourites.

I don't think that was the case lately.

But we are still good.”

"The influencers come from the right and left"

At the same event, Van Almsick complained about the generally declining status of athletes as role models in society: "We have to be careful not to lose our role model role," she said.

“The influencers come from the right and left.

We athletes and former athletes have to be careful not to let ourselves be driven away.

We have to fight our way through for the future so that the athletes continue to be seen as the role models they are," said the 44-year-old.

Meanwhile, the London-based sprint Paralympic champion Felix Streng criticized the attitude towards sport in Germany.

"In London there are many parks with public sports facilities, they are always full.

When I enter a sports facility in Germany, I am asked what I want here, whether I am allowed on here and whether I am insured," he said: "Today there are such high hurdles for children to be able to do sports at all.

If I go out, I'll be sent away again or there's a five meter high fence that I can't get over.

And if I don't have access, I reach for the console much more quickly."