I always play Archer, Cleric, Druid, Sorcerer. I choose Archer for roleplaying purposes (I wanted a more dex-based dual-wielding melee fighter), but the Paladin could be better because they can use plate armour, and all the stats become ridiculously high by the end anyways. Archer also can't use shield, but I think equipping shield on your best melee damage dealer is a huge waste. The best melee character(s) should always dual wield or use two-handed weapons to maximize melee damage.
Paladin, Cleric, Druid, Sorcerer is good party also because they use of all 3 armour types. For the Paladin I would stick with two-handed weapons (sword, spear and/or axe) and leave the shield for the Cleric. However, using Paladin instead of Archer does reduce the elemental spell power, and it's true elemental is better than the self spells. So there's that drawback.
Paladin can repair easily having only 3 magic skills as opposed to 5-7 magic skills that the other classes have. And of course, no one forces you to pump a paladin or archer's magic skills as much as the others. At least there is that option with the paladin or archer. Knight gives you no option, and lack of options/flexibility is not an advantage. Knight sucks. The only reason to use the knight is more HP (a lot more HP).
Archer, Cleric, Druid, Sorcerer
Paladin, Cleric, Druid, Sorcerer
....those are the two best party compositions, imo.