ALUN ARMSTRONG admits his Darlington side threw away two points as they drew 2-2 with Chester at the Deva Stadium.

Quakers had produced arguably their best away performance of the season – even better than the win at Brackley – for 84 minutes, until Chester scored twice within a minute to snatch a point they hardly deserved.

Darlington scored twice through Jake Cooper and Jake Cassidy, but missed several good chances to add to their tally, and that cost them in the end. They could easily have had a hat-trick of wins, and their first at the Deva Stadium as a fan-owned club.

“It’s so disappointing from being in a comfortable position to throw away two points away like that,” said Armstrong. “It feels as if we lost the game. I was gutted for the lads, because they worked ever so hard but then they switched off. By the time Chester scored, we should have been 5-0 up.

“How we haven’t won the game, I’ll never know, but I suppose at the start of play that if you’d said that we’d get a draw, I would have taken it. Everybody knew their roles from defensive set-plays, but the first goal from a corner gave them a lift, and I thought we should have stopped the cross for the second.

“I thought our gameplan worked. We knew Chester would have possession at times, but we caught them on the break several times. I thought we should have been 3-0 up at half-time, and I was really disappointed that we were only 1-0 up. I thought Jack Lambert was outstanding, Jake Cassidy was immense and our midfield was superb – Chester never played through us.

Quakers were sharper than Chester in the first half and always caused problems on the counter-attack. They nearly took the lead on 13 minutes when Lambert, who signed a contract last week, played a perfectly-weighted through ball for Cassidy to run clean through into the area, but advancing keeper Louis Gray managed to turn the ball wide.

From the corner, Chester couldn’t get the ball away, and Cooper had a close-range effort turned off the line.

Quakers’ early enterprise and superior play earned them the lead on 28 minutes, when Lambert swung a corner over from the left to the far post where Cooper was waiting to head his third goal in as many games.

The visitors should have got a second on 35 minutes when more hard work again won the ball in midfield, and Cassidy sent Kevin Dos Santos running through one-on-one, but again Gray saved.

Chester had 15 minutes of good possession without creating a serious opening at the start of the second half, but Quakers caught them on the counter for the second on 63 minutes.

Lambert broke from inside his own half and found Jarrett Rivers, who in turn helped the ball on for overlapping right-back Kallum Griffiths, whose low shot was partly saved by Gray, and predator Cassidy knocked the ball into the net.

Lambert, Will Hatfield, Griffiths and Cassidy all missed chances for a third before Chester turned up the heat in the last ten minutes.

Tommy Taylor saved from Charlie Jolley and Anthony Dudley hit the post from the follow-up. But that was only a brief escape for Quakers as Kevin Roberts was left unmarked to score from a corner and, within a minute, Josh Askew headed home the equaliser.