THINGS are starting to look up for Knutsford FC.

After a difficult start to the season, they head into September having garnered seven points from their past three Cheshire Football League Premier Division games.

Despite issues with injuries and unavailability, Jordan Gunter’s side are hitting their stride ahead of starting their Cheshire Amateur Cup campaign away at Mallaby on Saturday, kick off 3pm.

It will be a repeat of a first-round tie from 2017-18 – the season Reds won the competition – and hopes will be high of coming away with a victory once again.

Momentum has been gained from an against-the-odds 2-1 win at in-form Crewe FC on Saturday, which featured a brace from makeshift striker Barney Wynne.

Normally a right-back, Wynne was forced into an attacking role after Reds – already without 16 unavailable or injured players – lost James Clancy to injury after just four minutes.

Against a Crewe side that had won five of their six games before this one, Gunter’s men started with back-up keeper Steve Dryden between the sticks and only two substitutes – one of them being 16-year-old Rafe Beresford – on the bench.

Still, they pushed on and got their rewards on 37 minutes.

Impressive youngster Brad Warren split the home defence with a lofted pass to find the run of Wynne, who beat the offside trap and coolly lifted the ball over the keeper for the opening goal.

Things got even better for Reds on the stroke of half time when they found themselves two goals to the good.

Bradley West drove into the area and when the ball broke free in the box, Wynne reacted like a seasoned centre-forward to bundle his second goal over the line.

Crewe came hard at their visitors after the break, forcing Reds onto the back foot.

Just before the hour mark, their lead was halved when Nathan Southern ploughed home a free kick from 25 yards out.

With belief in rescuing the game renewed, the hosts continued to attack but Knutsford’s three-man defence – marshalled expertly by Graeme Brotherton – resisted.

At the other end, West and Wynne tired and struggled to hold up the ball.

Reds were not without chances though, with Nathan Cartner volleying the best of them just wide from the edge of the box.

Crewe hit the woodwork as Nathan Tickle’s long-range effort rebounded off the crossbar, but Knutsford were able to see out a magnificent victory.

Knutsford: Dryden, Sutherland, Cartner, Maunder, Brotherton, Warren, Rezayan, Riley, Butler, West, Clancy (Wynne) Sub not used: Beresford