Chester FC dropped to 15th in the National League after last minute heartache at home to Eastleigh.
Scott Wilson bundled home a winner at the death in a game that the Blues can feel aggrieved not to have taken something from.
It was, in truth, a poor game of football which neither side deserved to win, but the manner of the defeat was particularly galling.
Having been without a game during the previous fortnight owing to Lincoln City's FA Cup exploits, Chester boss Jon McCarthy opted to make two changes to the side that lost 3-2 to Tranmere Rovers.
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McCarthy handed a first start to midfielder Lucas Dawson, who made his debut off the bencg against Tranmere, while Theo Vassell came back into the side as Wade Joyce and Evan Horwood dropped to the bench.
The first half was a game of few chances and Matt Tubbs forced a good save from Alex Lynch in the Chester goal while the same player dragged a shot just across the face of goal on 13 minutes.
The Chester back five looked strong in the opening period and the Spitfires struggled to find the gaps, but the Blues were unable to offer much in the final third either.
Sam Hughes, captaining the side once more, was flagged offside from an Elliott Durrell free kick, nodding just wide, while referee Andrew Miller ignored shouts for a penalty when the excellent Johnny Hunt's deep free kick appeared to strike the hand of Eastleigh's Paul Reid just after the half hour mark.
A classic it was not in the opening half but the performances of Hunt and Ryan Lloyd particularly pleasing.
The start of the second half was anything but dull, though, as Chester flew out of the blocks and looked determined to make an impact.
Dawson saw a 20 yard free kick well beaten away by Graham Stack in the Eastleigh goal after Richards had been scythed down just outside the box by Gavin Hoyte.
And Chester thought they had made a breakthrough minutes later when James Alabi's low effort was saved by ex-Arsenal stopper Stack with the rebound falling to Richards who was bundled over. But instead of pointing to the spot, referee Miller gave a free kick to the Spitfires after the linesman flagged the Chester striker as offside.
The Blues went close again when Richards was played in by the impressive Durrell, but the Blues striker could only fire wide from an angle after being forced wide by Reda Johnson.
But unable to make a breakthrough, Chester were then puit under the cosh themselves and Lynch was forced into action to deny Ben Close after he had managed to fashion some room in the box, 12 yards from goal.
Both sides huffed and puffed in search of the winner and Tom Shaw, Evan Horwood and Danny O'Brien were introduced to try and find some urgency.
The game looked to be heading for a stalemate until the 90th minute when Michael Green whipped in a wicked corner kick that evaded everyone bar substitute Wilson who was on hand to bundle in at the far post and leave Chester empty handed.
It was a harsh result on balance and one that leaves Chester looking over their shoulder for the run in.
Chester: Lynch, Hughes, Astles, Hudson (O'Brien 77), Hunt, Vassell, Durrell, Lloyd, Dawson (Horwood 80), Alabi, Richards (Shaw 70). Subs: Roberts, Joyce.
Bookings: Hudson, Richards.
Eastleigh: Stack, Green, Close, Hoyte, McAllister, Odoffin, Johnson (Obileye 80), Burge (Matthews 69), Reid, Togwell, Tubbs (Wilson 69). Subs: Constable, Clarke.
Goals: Wilson 90.
Star man: Lucas Dawson.