Belfast Telegraph

IFA urged to consider final venue switch

By Graham Luney

Coleraine have asked the Irish Football Association to consider moving the Irn-Bru Cup final to Windsor Park.

IFA urged to consider final venue switch Just the ticket: Geoff Wilson is looking at cup final optionsColeraine have asked the Irish Football Association to consider moving the Irn-Bru Cup final to Windsor Park.

The Bannsiders have sold out their ticket allocation of 1,750 within three days of going on sale but hundreds of the club’s fans have missed out.

There have even been reports of Coleraine fans purchasing tickets allocated to their opponents, Crusaders.

The final on Saturday, January 28 (2.30pm) is scheduled for the Ballymena Showgrounds and both clubs were happy with the venue.

However, the demand for tickets in the north west has caught Coleraine by surprise and the club is desperate to avoid a situation where supporters are left out in the cold.

The IFA are now consulting with the clubs, Ballymena Borough Council, PSNI and health and safety chiefs to see if additional seating can be placed at the Showgrounds to allow for the allocation of additional tickets.

The Crusaders allocation of 1,300 tickets has not sold out yet.

Coleraine would now be happy for the game to be switched to the international venue to ensure that all fans who wanted to attend the final could do so.

“We could easily sell hundreds more tickets for the final so that’s why we make no apologies for inquiring about the availability of Windsor Park,” said Coleraine chairman Colin McKendry.

“One option being looked at is the additional seating, like the temporary seating area that has been in place at Windsor Park for internationals but if that is not an option, Windsor should be considered. Moving the game to Windsor could have financial implications for both clubs but we simply want as many fans as possible to be at the final.”

IFA marketing chief Geoff Wilson has assured Coleraine fans “every possible ticketing option” is being explored.

He said: “We are looking at alternative ticketing options including temporary seating. There will be ongoing meetings to see what can be done as we recognise the demand for tickets.

“First and foremost, we have to see if we can get more fans into the Showgrounds. The police and health and safety chiefs will need to approve additional seating. We will do all we can to make sure fans are able to attend the game and we’re delighted with the interest in the game.”

Belfast Telegraph


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