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Cliftonville slash queues with ticket scanners

By Conor McLaughlin

Cliftonville have announced plans for pioneering technology that will see supporters access Solitude using ticket scanners at the turnstiles – a first for Irish League football.

Developed in conjunction with Belfast-based software specialists WASP Solutions, sponsors of the NI Football League Cup, the scheme – which was unveiled alongside the Reds' Season Ticket packages – will allow fans to print off individual match tickets at home or download them to their phones and tablets.

As well as the obvious benefits to Cliftonville supporters who live overseas, local-based fans will no longer be required to queue up for tickets to see record-breaking striker Joe Gormley and co in action – much to the satisfaction of director David Begley.

"As the oldest club in Ireland, we pride ourselves on being at the forefront of new developments in Irish League football," he explained.

"We were first to introduce online ticket sales a number of years ago and, while that has been a success, actually being able to facilitate the home-printing of tickets is something we have been working on for quite some time.

"It was particularly apparent at the end of last season that a lot was being asked of our supporters. Our final five fixtures were, for example, all-ticket affairs which meant an awful lot of queuing.

"We were wary of the fact that some people's work or home commitments prevented them from getting along to our ticket outlets, while others simply live too far away to make repeated trips back and forth.

"That was a real driving force behind our motivation to introduce this technology to Solitude and we're delighted that, the next time an all-ticket match comes along, supporters will simply be able to print one off at home and scan it at the turnstile."

Warren Dowey, managing director of WASP Solutions, said: "As the first ever winners of the WASP Solutions League Cup, it's only fitting that Cliftonville are the pioneers of this very exciting venture."

The Reds also unveiled a price freeze across all categories of season ticket, with adults able to watch all of the champions' Premiership home fixtures for just £130.

Family tickets (one adult and two under-16s) are on sale for £175, seniors and youths retail at £50, while fans aged 6-11 can secure their seats for £25.

In addition, Cliftonville are also offering free admission to the home leg of their forthcoming Champions League second qualifying round tie with all season tickets purchased before Friday, June 20.

* Glentoran's back up goalkeeper Aaron Hogg has signed a new two-year contract with the club.

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