English Premier League club Liverpool has apologised to fans after a glitch with its new mobile ticketing service led to the weekend game against Athletic Bilbao being delayed by 30 minutes.

Images of huge queues outside entry points at Anfield were shared on social media, with the club experiencing “issues relating to access processes and matchday operations”. Kick-off for the game was delayed from 4pm until 4.30pm as ticketing services employees sought to reduce queues and get supporters into the stadium.

Liverpool has introduced NFC-powered ticketing for home games this season, with all season ticket holders required to use mobile ticket passes.

The club, which is partnered with SeatGeek, gets an immediate opportunity to test its service again this evening (Monday) when Anfield plays host to Spanish club Osasuna.

“We understand how frustrating this has been for our supporters, who have been looking forward to getting back into Anfield,” the club said in a statement.

“We will be doing a full debrief of (Sunday’s) entry process to identify why the system was slower than expected and will endeavour to ensure such issues are addressed ahead of Monday night’s match against Osasuna. As part of this we will communicate any changes impacting fans, along with additional guidance, for this next friendly fixture in due course.

“We thank supporters for their patience and understanding.”

Liverpool begin their Premier League campaign at Norwich City this coming weekend with the first home game versus Burnley on August 21.

Fans who buy general sale tickets can use a mobile code or print-at-home ticket. All mobile ticket holders are required to bring ID to games with them.

Liverpool announced plans to deploy widespread mobile ticketing when it first partnered with SeatGeek last March — just weeks before the last Premier League game at Anfield with a full crowd before Covid-19 restrictions were introduced.