CHANGES will be made at Knutsford in a bid to regain their Cheshire League title, chairman Jimmy Evans says.

Having won the Premier Division title in 2015-16, Reds finished a disappointing fourth this season, 17 points behind champions Whaley Bridge.

Manager Scott Dignan was unable to name an unchanged side throughout the season and Evans believes this was a key part in their failure to defend their crown.

Evans has met briefly with Dignan to discuss points of issue and the manager retains his support, but the chairman says there are a number of things that need to change.

“Overall, it has been a disappointing season by the standards we set,” he said.

“Every week we seemed to be missing three or four key players and that seems to be a sign of the times.

“In the old days it was total commitment from players but now they seem to turn up and play when they like.

“That’s not just with us. We’ve spoken to other clubs at our level and it seems to be common in this day and age.

“Complacency has crept in and we have not earned the right to defend our title properly.

“I am frustrated for Scott because he is a very hard-working guy who is popular among the players.

“We’ve spoken briefly but we need to have a proper sit-down chat. He is aware of what we are unhappy with and knows what needs to be done.”

Evans said player discipline was key among the things that had to improve, both on and off the pitch.

“I can imagine Scott will have been annoyed that he had planned a side only for players to turn up with spurious excuses for not playing,” he said.

“We’ve not been able to play the same side all season. That’s never going to help matters.

“We became a whinging side as well in terms of complaining to referees and that is not what we’re about.

“We were picking up stupid bookings in games that put us on the back foot.

“It was a build-up of frustration that things were not going our way, but that needs to improve.

“Other clubs are about winning at all costs, but our core values are discipline and following club rules. We went away from that too often.”

The fight for the title was tight, but Knutsford fell away with a run of one win from their final eight games.

Evans believes Reds should have finished second and fell away worse than he’d imagined.

“We threw it away, in all honesty,” he said.

“I think we still should have come second with the games we had left.”