Denmark Women qualifier against Sweden called off in pay dispute

Denmark Women's World Cup qualifier against Sweden has been cancelled due to an ongoing pay dispute.

The team refused to play a friendly against Netherlands last month in protest over pay and conditions.

The Danish Football Association (DBU) announced on its website on Wednesday that it had informed its Swedish counterpart that Friday's match in Gothenburg was off.

"It is a historically bad day for the women's team and for Danish football overall," DBU senior vice-president Kim Hallberg said.

"It is regrettable but also grotesque that we are in a situation where players will not meet up for major international matches, even though we have offered better terms and invited them to new negotiations after the matches."

The DBU said it had offered to increase the investment in the women's team by two million Danish Krone (£239,571) per year, from 2.6m to 4.6m, with the money going on higher salaries, bonuses and strengthening staff numbers.

The men's team offered to give up their 500,000 Krone (£59,891) annual bonus for the women, but this was rejected.

The DBU and the players' association (Spillerforeningen) have been in negotiations over the situation since last November.

The women's team, who lost to Netherlands in the Euro 2017 final, are due to play a World Cup qualifier in Croatia on Tuesday.

The DBU said it had also informed FIFA of the players' absence, and was "awaiting a disciplinary ruling that may be both financial, punitive and/or excluded from the entire World Cup qualification."