A second successive defeat saw the Dolly Blues relinquish their position at the top of the table with an out of sorts performance at lowly Colwyn Bay.
With a missed penalty and a late sending off thrown into the mix it was an all-round miserable outing for Phil Brown’s side as the hosts won for the first time in 13 games.
City did start the game brightly and dominated possession for large portions of the contest, but they were unable to muster many meaningful efforts on goal.
Early in the match a few half chances were deflected wide or over the bar, whilst a penalty shout was waved away after Jordan Connerton’s headed effort appeared to be blocked by the arm of a Seagulls defender.
Against the run of play Jamie Rainford gave the hosts the lead out of nothing with a superb strike 20 minutes in.
Taking three touches in the air to turn towards the goal the striker hit a sweet strike just inside the right-hand post.
From this point onwards the game became a scrappy, heated and frustrating affair with the hosts happy to defend deep and in numbers and play a long ball game.
The Blues also felt Colwyn Bay were trying to slow the game down as well, the two benches at loggerheads over how quickly new balls were being introduced from the sideline.
The Seagulls doubled their lead two minutes after the restart, a soft free-kick awarded by referee Sam Mulhall was flicked into the box and fell to Daniel Bartle to volley home to make it 2-0.
After sending a couple of free-kicks high and wide City did get the chance to get back into the game as Connerton was brought down inside the box with 12 minutes still to play.
The Dollies’ top scorer stepped up and hit his shot low and hard to the keeper’s left but Kieran Wolland in the Seagulls’ goal pulled off a superb save.
Things then went from bad to worse as substitute Louis Mayers didn’t last long on the pitch with the striker shown a straight red late in the game for an off the ball stamp as frustrations boiled over.
The Blues then felt they had another reason to be aggrieved with referee Mulhall as the final action of the game saw Hannu Tam, on his return to the side, taken out by Wolland after beating the ‘keeper to a long ball but all appeals were waved away with the final whistle ending a miserable afternoon shortly after.
Brown’s side are second on goal difference with top of the table Farsley having two games in hand.
The Blues next host Tadcaster Albion on Saturday.