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e-Ticketing Nightmare: Fans left reeling after online system struggles to cope with demand

Some of our readers are left reeling after missing out on tickets for the Lincoln game... Could details on sizes of pods have been better communicated? Did Sunderland’s e-ticketing system struggle to cope with the demand from season card holders?

Dear Roker Report,

I joined the queue for tickets both on a mobile and a laptop at around 9:40, got in on both at 10:08, and there were still plenty of seats. Picked my seat, then tried to pick the seat next to it to complete the pod, but literally couldn’t do so on the mobile, and got the ever so lovely “Sorry...” message if I did the same on the laptop. Tried this with multiple seats, across all browsers for half an hour, no luck on anything - map kept freezing and the same error messages regularly popping up. Eventually came down to a single seat, which when clicked just gave you a message of “Sorry no prices available”... and then it was sold out.

A simple prompt when logging in to say how many seats you needed and what kind of tickets, followed by an auto-assign would’ve fixed this with no bother. There shouldn’t have been a need to pick your own seats, given the frantic nature of fans desperate to get back in after 14 months!

I paused my season card for this season and renewed again for next, so accepted I’d not get one before Friday, but this has left me and probably a boatload of other fans absolutely gutted, proper bitter taste in the mouth.

If I were a child, I’d hope we batted Lincoln away and have a lovely 0-0 borefest at home now, but the strip will pass! Well done to all who managed to get their tickets today, you deserve a medal!


Dear Roker Report,

I started queueing at 9:45am, and was already down in the queue. But, my turn came and it seemed there were still some left.

I couldn’t book any of the Pods that were showing as available. Some were two, three or five seats together - I’d click and select them but the last one in every pod I got a message to say they couldn’t add them to my basket.

How hard can it be to take them off selection as soon as someone clicks on them?

Massive frustration.


Dear Roker Report,

That was massively frustrating - I was in the queue from about 9:50am, and was number 900 and odd (exact figure escapes me), but was greeted with error messages each time.

I only wanted one for me and one senior for me Da, but didn’t seem to be an option for some reason.


Dear Roker Report,

Having seen it slated in the past for high demand games I’ve never experienced it first hand due to always having a season card and 50 odd black cats points.

Coming into this after having to not renew last season, when work ended at the drop of a hat with the pandemic, it was an absolute shambles.

I was through the queue system at about 10:03 so thought I may have had a decent chance. Loads of available seats on the little map. Click click click.... ‘unable to add to basket’.

I kept trying for 40 minutes as seats popped up and went away.

I don’t understand how that system was at all workable, why they didn’t just have you select how many seats you want and then they put you where is available is beyond me.

It would be nice to see the club sack off that system and hopefully try to come up with a more common-sense approach of how they manage it.


Dear Roker Report,

I had issues selecting the blue dots for the seats, then when selected the payment box didn’t come up.

I eventually managed to get 3 seats that took me through to payment page, and after I added in card details it said the session had timed out.

The time taken was trying to select the blue dots. I don’t know why you couldn’t just be assigned seats dependent on how many you needed per bubble.

I was 174th in the queue and got through by 10am and there were loads of blue sections to select seats from, but when selecting the sections there were no blue dots or the blue dots couldn’t be selected.

It was so frustrating, and took so much time. I understand not everyone would be successful but feel the process could have been more streamlined to help with timings.


Dear Roker Report,

I just had a horrendous experience with the ticket system.

Managed to add 2 adults and an u16 for myself, my partner and my little brother. Just before checking out, the ticket system wouldn’t let me assign the other adult and u16 tickets to my little brother and partner who were both in my network, and after minutes of trying the session expired and the tickets were sold.


Dear Roker Report,

Using e-ticketing was absolutely ridiculous - I was in the queue from 9:45am (1373 in queue) at the time. Then at about 10:10am I finally got into the site, then I selected the only two tickets left in the pod to add to my basket, but it kept on saying “unfortunately we are unable to add the selected seats to the basket”.

So, I tried a different part where there were seats available, however it kept on saying “unfortunately we are unable to add the selected seats to the basket”.


Dear Roker Report,

I think the world and his dog was trying to buy the two seats together in L9. Tried on multiple occasions to buy single seats and to buy a group of two in different blocks.

Was met with an error message which I saw more times this morning than I’ve seen us draw 1-1 in recent years. More groups of six and four than anything else.

It should have been organised to where the fans requested their number of seats and the club filled the stadium. I also would have like to have seen loyalty points incorporated.

I’ve accumulated them for the square root of knaff all.


Dear Roker Report,

Tried to purchase two tickets this morning. Got on the system in time with plenty seats available. Couldn’t buy two seats together and kept getting the attached message. After almost 30 minutes there were no seats left available and I’ve not managed to get one.




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