November 21, 2020
Nigel James, father of the Manchester United and Chelsea stars, on how ‘20p challenges’ set them on the road to success
Siblings Lauren and Reece James go from back garden to England history
“Lauren had to learn quickly,” says Nigel James. “Otherwise she didn’t get the ball. When she and her brothers were having a kickaround, they wouldn’t let her just come and take the ball. She had to work very hard to get it. And when she did get it, they made sure she didn’t have it for very long!”
As the father of the 19-year-old Manchester United forward who received her first call-up from Phil Neville this week and Reece – the Chelsea full-back who has become a regular member of Gareth Southgate’s squad this year aged 20 – James is in a unique position. Never in English Football have a brother and sister represented their country and, although the cancellation of the women’s friendly against Norway on 1 December means Lauren will have to wait a little longer for her debut, her dad is justifiably proud of both his children’s achievements.
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