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‘We always wanted the best for each other’ - Chelsea duo Reece & Lauren James aiming to become first brother & sister to win FA Cup

14:35 GMT+3 12/05/2022
Lauren James and Reece James 2021
Both are in action at Wembley for the Blues this weekend - Reece will face Liverpool on Saturday, before Lauren takes on Manchester City on Sunday

Reece and Lauren James could become the first brother and sister to win the FA Cup this weekend, as both prepare to represent Chelsea in a double-header of finals at Wembley.

Reece is first up on Saturday as Thomas Tuchel’s side take on Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool, a team that beat them in a very close Carabao Cup final earlier this season which was decided by penalties.

Lauren will then be involved on Sunday afternoon as Emma Hayes’ Chelsea go for another league and cup double, having won the Women’s Super League on Sunday. They too are seeking revenge, with opponents Manchester City having beaten them in the Continental Cup final back in March.

What have Reece and Lauren James said?

Ahead of the games this weekend, the pair spoke to reporters about what it was like growing up together as two aspiring footballers and how that helped them.

“It's definitely not going to make us worse,” Reece said. “I think every brother and sister would kind of have that competitive edge.

“We always wanted the best for each other and the best for ourselves and I think that drove us both to where we are today.”

Their father, Nigel, a football coach, has had a huge impact on both as well.

“He's played a big part with coaching us alongside the clubs and giving us guidance, keeping us grounded and stuff, so we stayed focused,” Lauren explained.

“I think he definitely had a big influence on where we are today,” Reece added. “He's definitely proud of both of us representing Chelsea.

“Growing up, we both supported Chelsea so to represent them now is obviously a great feeling as well. We've both put in a lot of hard work, in football and away from football, to get to where we are.”

Could Chelsea win the men’s and women’s FA Cup?

That positive motivation from within the family and the drive that each player has means they are on the cusp of history this weekend, in an FA Cup double-header.

Lauren has won this competition before with Chelsea back in December's delayed final, but has yet to make an appearance at Wembley. Reece, meanwhile, has played on the famous pitch but has not got his hands on this trophy, twice being a runner-up.

“We’re both looking forward to it,” Reece said. “Our aim is to win both trophies. She'll be supporting me and, likewise, I'll be supporting her.

“It's obviously a great piece of history to [potentially] have. I think we need to take it one step at a time and win the first game and hopefully, [the women] win as well.”

“Obviously, it's a big occasion at Wembley but I just have to look at it like another game,” Lauren added, ahead of potentially making her debut at the iconic stadium. “It will be a special moment – hopefully [with us] winning.”

Both players also spoke about what it has been like competing at the highest level amid lots of noise off the pitch, with the change of ownership and sanctions on the club.

“If you let things distract you, then it can show on the pitch,” Lauren said. “I think we have a good group to not allow those distractions [to happen], which is helping us keep focus.”

Reece echoed those thoughts on the men’s side. “Everyone's aware of what's happening, but no one really listens,” he said. “Our job is to play football.

“What happens with the club, with the owners and stuff, is not really up to us. Our job is to perform on the pitch and come in and train every day.”

“The aim is always to win trophies,” Lauren added. “I think everyone around just cracks on with their day-to-day and takes each game as it comes. Hopefully we can win another trophy.”

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