Chester FC assistant Jon McCarthy admitted the FA Trophy loss at FC Halifax Town was 'bitterly disappointing' for everyone connected with the club.
Despite having the better possession and territory for much of the game, the Blues drew a blank for the third straight game and conceded another poor goal.
Jordan Burrow ended his drought when he poked in ex-Chester midfielder Kingsley James' cross in added time at the end of the first-half to book a home quarter-final with Gateshead.
The Blues had been on top prior to the goal and although Halifax came under pressure late on as the visitors tried to get back on terms, Jim Harvey's side never really looked like surrounding the lead to extend Chester's concerning form.
"We're bitterly disappointed for the fans and everybody," said McCarthy afterwards.
"I think it was a high level of performance in the first-half, we did things right, we had the attitude right and showed some quality but we weren't very good last week and didn't win a game and we feel like we were probably the better team tonight but again we didn't win the game so that's difficult.
"We put a lot of crosses into the box but they didn't have the quality to get us a goal. I think we were a constant threat and you could tell that from the way their bench was and their players but it hasn't got us the result and the run of form is disappointing.
"We're incredibly frustrated in there and the manager clearly is. It's difficult because it's not a tired performance, it's not a performance without effort and there was some quality and I think people who watched the game would accept that but it hasn't got us anything and that's tough for us at the moment.
"We feel a little bit aggrieved on a push before the goal but I need to have a look at the DVD although we did feel there was a big hand from one of their players to knock Ryan Higgins out of the way which allows Kingsley to turn but we'll see that and I'm not making excuses.
"At the other end we created enough opportunities and were enough of a threat that we think we should open up and create a clearcut chance and even at the end of the game we were still pushing really hard."
Chester must now prepare for three vital league games against teams below them in the table, starting with a long trip to Torquay United on Saturday.
The Blues expect to be without Luke George, who went off with a pulled hamstring after 14 minutes, and have major worries over Ben Heneghan, who was forced off in the second-half with an ankle problem sustained in heavy tackle with former team-mate James, while Sam Hughes, who was employed as an emergency centre-back, took a bang to the head.
McCarthy said: "We lost Luke George and Ben Heneghan, who are really significant for us. Luke going off after 10 minutes or so can affect your game-plan and Ben had a clear injury at the end of the first-half.
"That's our centre-back and our holding midfielder so that didn't help but actually there was a spirit and we kept going but it affected us and ultimately we weren't able to score a goal tonight and that's disappointing.
"Ben's hurt his ankle. Kingsley James caught him and I think it's at least a yellow as he went right over the top of Ben and it looked a really nasty challenge but it goes unpunished.
"Luke's a hamstring and Sam Hughes we think has a lost a tooth so we'll have to deal with that."