A.J. Walker


Football and Bloody Technology

Forget VAR as the bane of a football supporter's life, sometimes it's something all together everyday and more personal. And this week it's bloody mobile phones. I was offered a ticket for the Liverpool v Chelski game at the weekend. A great game to go to. I used to go to all the home games but haven't been for a few years now, so the offer was gratefully received. But my oh my, what a waste of my time it has proven to be.

Tickets are no longer issued, nor
LFC fancards etc. Nope, you need to scan in with your mobile phone with the ticket in your Google Pay or Apple Wallet. And that means your phone needs to have NFC capabilities. I didn't even know what NFC stood for: it's Near Field Communication, which is for transferring information to nearby phones or affiliated devices - which includes using your phone for payments and/or holding tickets on. Inevitably my phone doesn't have NFC; despite the technology being out for years before my phone was made (I've got a Motorola G8 Power Lite). I was really keen on going to the game and have tried multiple attempts to get other older phones working, one of which was a Blackview 5500. It had NFC on it but the phone wasn't very well. The battery was virtually dead and the programs on the phone were no were near as rich and encompassing as the ones on my current phone. I'd have had to have days struggling with it and at least half expecting it not to work properly; not ideal when I am trying to sort stuff out.

I even considered buying a new phone with the NFC on. However I've also broken the screen on my iPad which will require changing at some point: there goes the mobile phone then. All in all I must have spent three or four hours messing about with things and have basically achieved nothing and still won't be going to the game.

It's the third time that me and Liverpool FC have struggled due to technology and/or ticketing changes. The first two were worse in the long term - rather than costing me the chance to go to just one game. One was removing my name from the waiting list for a
Season Ticket: I was overseas when the wrote to me (why the hell not email?!) and only gave a short time when you needed to reply to the letter and pay a nominal fee (as I remember it) to remain on the list. I think I had been on the waiting list for about 8 or 9 years at the time. Taking me off the list when I was overseas for a month or two and couldn't react to a letter was very poor; and since then people I know who were on the list after me have now got season tickets - so I'd be going to every game right now if it wasn't for that. * Deep breath… relax *

The other time was when they stopped the
Priority Ticket Scheme. My friend and I got to nearly every game (league and cup) when that was operating. Once they stopped the scheme the opportunity to get tickets was reduced to minuscule chances. Argh.

If only you could just have a season ticket like in the old days. Until this week I didn't even know what NFC was, so if nothing else I've learnt something.
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