Amazingly, despite the catalogue of poor performances and miserable defeats, Chester FC remain four points adrift of safety in the National League.
But this was another opportunity missed as they failed to glean anything from a clash with a Woking side who were down to 10 men for the final 30 minutes and who had won just once since November coming into the contest.
The struggles they face off the field that ultimately have a knock-on effect in terms of what happens on it can’t be ignored, but this was another laboured performance from a Blues side void of both confidence and ideas.
Josh Staunton’s deflected effort was all the separated the sides, but the sending off of Matt Young just before the hour mark failed to change the complexion of the game and, in truth, Chester got their just rewards. The games are disappearing fast.
While the Blues had not had a league game since the 3-0 drubbing at Maidenhead United two weeks previous, much had changed off the field.
Four board members left and four new ones arrived while the Blues had raised £45,000 of their initial £50,000 target to keep them in business in the short term.
The fans had rallied around the football club in its time of need, although there was much to be done on the playing side to instill any kind of feel-good factor around events on the pitch, with the Blues four points from safety coming into the contest with the Cards.
Injuries had hit an already threadbare Blues squad with Jordan Gough, Paul Turnbull, Andy Halls and new addition Myles Anderson all rule out of the trip to Surrey.
So in came Shaun Hobson, a recent loan signing from AFC Bournemouth, while there was a return for Shepherd Murombedzi, who answered another SOS from manager Marcus Bignot after his 45-minute free-of-charge cameo last month.
Gary Roberts, back from a three-match ban, made his firt Chester start while Jordan Archer started for the first time since November, partnered up front with Harry White.
The Blues began the contest relatively brightly, certainly when compared to their opening 15 minutes at Maidenhead a fortnight before.
But there was little in the way of quality at either end in the opening quarter of an hour.
Anthony Cook had the first effort of the half when his 25-yard free kick whisped inches wide of Sam Hornby’s right-hand post.
And the Cards thought they had the advantage shortly before the 20-minute mark when striker Reece Grego-Cox bundled home a low cross from close range only to be flagged for offside, much to the QPR loanee’s chagrin.
But Woking were ahead soon after.
A corner from the left was swung in and caused some panic in the area with defender Staunton the man deemed to have bundled the ball into the net from six yards for the opener, albeit after a wicked deflection from Hobson.
Cards keeper Nathan Baxter’s first touch of the ball came moments after the restart when a Roberts free kick found Ryan Astles’ head 10 yards out, with Baxter picking it off with ease.
Charlie Carter forced a save out of Hornby on 27 minutes when he glanced a header goalwards before the Chester keeper had to be alert to deny the lively Grego-Cox on 39 minutes when Lathaniel Rowe-Turner was caught out with a slipped ball through and Grego-Cox could only fire at Hornby.
It was a half of football that we had seen all too often this season, with the Blues offering little in the way of width and the strikers having to deal with scraps and long balls played into the channels.
HALF TIME: WOKING 1 CHESTER FC 0
The Cards began the second half strongly and put Chester under the cosh almost immediately with a flurry of corners that caused havoc.
But the Blues managed to weather the initial storm, although the remained unable to offer anything of not going forward, with two long range Roberts efforts that flew way past the target the sum of their efforts in the first 10 minutes of the second half.
They were, though, given some hope on 58 minutes when the Cards were reduced to 10 men.
Matt Young was deemed to have gone in late on James Akintunde and was, somewhat surprisingly, shown a straight red card by referee Chris O’Donnell. much to the ire of the home fans and Cards boss Anthony Limbrick.
With the visitors now having the numerical advantage Bignot opted to go with a third striker and threw on Ross Hannah for the ineffective Craig Mahon in a bid to find a route back into the game.
But Chester were struggling to make the man advantage count and the red card didn’t take Woking out of their stride as they continued to dominate possession and the dangerous and tenacious Grego-Cox a constant threat.
A quick break forward almost brought a Woking second on 78 minutes when Grego-Cox found an unmarked Cook, but the winger could only curl his effort well wide.
But Chester had their best chance with 10 minutes remaining when an excellent Hobson ball found Hannah close in, with the substitute seeing his dinked effort over Baxter clip the top of the crossbar.
And Lucas Dawson, on for Kingsley James, saw his 20 yard free kick saved low by Baxter after it found its way through a crowd of bodies.
The Blues came close to a leveller just after the board for five additional minutes was held aloft as an Astles flick from a corner found Hannah, but his point blank effort was blocked and Woking’s Grego-Cox broke free at the other end, racing clear before seeing his effort crash of the crossbar and away to safety.
There was to be no late saviour for the Blues, though, and it’s looking bleak.
Woking: Baxter, Young, Staunton, Ralph, Ferdinand, Lathrope (Isaac 84), Carter, Cook, Banton (Jones 71), Orlu, Grego-Cox. Subs not used: Edwards, Saraiva, Mason.
Bookings: Grego-Cox, Cook, Staunton, Ralph.
Sent off: Young.
Goals: Staunton 23.
Chester: Hornby, Murombedzi, Rowe-Turner, Hobson, Astles, Mahon (Hannah 64), Roberts, James (Dawson 80), Akintunde, Archer, White. Subs not used: Firth, Crawford, Waters.
Bookings: White, Archer, Dawson.
Referee: Chris O’Donnell.
Star man: Shaun Hobson.