THE final outcome of Knutsford FC’s season looks set to be decided off the pitch.

Their on-field action is now complete, with Reds finishing their campaign with a 2-0 victory over Malpas on Thursday night, with Daniel Ardern and Max Kennedy on the scoresheet.

However, the club are awaiting the outcome of a protest they lodged to the Cheshire Football League alleging Malpas fielded several ineligible players in the reverse fixture last month.

The outcome of that may move them from fourth to third in the final CFL League One table, which could lead to promotion to replace a Premier Division side that is moving laterally across the pyramid.

Regardless, chairman Jimmy Evans has hailed a positive season in which the club also lifted the Cheshire Amateur Cup.

“It’s been an excellent season with all the objectives/targets set at the start of the season exceeded with the big bonus of winning the Cheshire Amateur Cup,” he said.

“The management have done a great job and the players have worked hard, especially over the past month when the games came thick and fast as we mounted a big challenge for second place and automatic promotion.

“New volunteers Steve Burrows and Doug Brammer have made a big contribution and we have gained a strong youth following/

“Special thanks to Steve Jenyons, Aaron Wilbraham and Martyn Simcock who helped us out when our resources were sorely stretched.”

Knutsford did all they could on the pitch, with Ardern’s goal giving them an early lead in their final game.

Jonny Cavanagh and Martyn Simcock had already gone close before the opener arrived in the 11th minute, with Ardern finishing well from Charlie Rodick’s cut-back.

The visitors could have had more goals as they attacked down the hill before half time, but their depleted side lacked intensity and faced a second half kicking uphill.

However, they set about their task well with Mason Gunter having a good early chance but he failed to connect with the ball from inside the six-yard box.

The second goal did finally come with 14 minutes left as Kennedy hit a free kick that found the net via the underside of the crossbar.

Kennedy and Jimmy Woodward had chances to extend the lead but with precious little coming the other way, a two-goal cushion was always likely to be enough.