As London Irish winger Ben Loader trains this week for his side’s Premiership Rugby Cup semi-final, his brother, Danny, will be going through a similar process 800 miles away in the Portuguese city of Porto.
For the siblings, two years apart in age, are both playing at the top level in their respective sports.
Danny Loader, also known as Danny Namaso, was part of England’s under-17 football World Cup winning side in 2017 – alongside Manchester City’s Phil Foden, Manchester United’s Jadon Sancho and Nottingham Forest’s Morgan Gibbs White.
Loader: ‘Get one up’
He picked up his first domestic trophy last year when Porto won the Supertaça Cândido de Oliveira, Portugal’s equivalent to the Community Shield.
Elder brother Ben, meanwhile, can collect his first top-flight medal with London Irish if the Brentford-based side get past Northampton Saints in tomorrow’s cup semi and then topple either Sale Sharks or Exeter Chiefs in the final. And for Ben, there’s an element of getting one back for the rugby side of his family.
“He [Danny] obviously has got that U17 World Cup,” Ben, 24, told City A.M. “He’s just won a domestic cup trophy too so he’s a couple of trophies up on me.
“It’s always been a bit of healthy competition between us but we support each other no matter what.
“It would be nice to get one back, though, but it isn’t something that is at the forefront of my mind here [at Irish].
“A trophy is going to be a byproduct of us getting better and better and putting in good performances.”
Loader is one of a number of back-three players at London Irish who have caught the eye of the rugby world over the last couple of years.
And while Ollie Hassell-Collins and Henry Arundell have forced their way into the England set-up, Irish remain stocked with electric, pacey wingers and full-backs as they look to win their first trophy since 2002.
Last year Irish looked like favourites to win in the same competition but blew it in the final to Worcester Warriors. The match went to extra time and fly-half Paddy Jackson missed a number of crucial, match-winning kicks. Irish lost the match on tries scored despite the game finishing 25-25.
“Last year was a huge learning opportunity for us,” Loader adds. “That disappointment we felt in the final and not finishing the job when we felt like we could have and should have, I think that for us that’s a super valuable experience.
“Loads of boys have that in their mind but we’re a new group and there’s a renewed hunger to take it that one step further.”
In their opposition tomorrow night in west London, Northampton Saints, Irish will come up against a team whose qualities, speed and reactive play, are similar to their own.
“They like to play with the ball, they like to play an expansive game.” Loader says. “It’s a good test for us and I think we will be a good test for them as well.
“We’ve had a good training week and we’ve been looking at some areas to exploit. Hopefully we can exploit some of the weaknesses that they’ve got.”
Irish are on a mission to end a drought of top flight trophies that predates England winning the World Cup in 2003, but if Loader is anything like the rest of us when it comes to siblings there will be an underlying willingness to get one over on his brother.