EASTLEIGH are three games unbeaten under Andy Hessenthaler – but still too defensively fragile for the new boss’s liking.

Christmas and New Year is traditionally a time for giving, but the Spitfires are taking seasonal generosity to the extreme.

For the second time in five days they found themselves against ten men yesterday after Woking’s Chez Isaac had received his 54th-minute marching orders for an ill-judged lunge on Cav Miley.

When Chris Zebroski stylishly opened the scoring ten minutes later, it was the chance for Eastleigh to show they had finally learned how to protect a lead.

But their familiar failings soon surfaced as Charlie Carter pulled the ten men level before fellow sub Inih Effiong converted a penalty needlessly conceded by Danny Hollands.

The Spitfires hit back late through skipper Callum Howe, but snatching a point from the jaws of defeat was no great shakes against a Woking side who had won just one of their previous nine league games.

Given the depth of experience Eastleigh have paid top dollar to recruit, their game management leaves much to be desired.

And, while Zebroski has been a revelation up front of late, their defensive frailty continues to undermine them.

“If we can’t defend as a team, we’re not going to win football matches. It’s as simple as that,” summed up Hessenthaler in the wake of the 2-2 draw.

“It’s down to me whether I change things, not just personnel but shape, but I’m a big believer that it’s not about shape. This is about players and taking responsibility and today I thought we didn’t take responsibility at certain times.

“Our decision-making, not just today but over the season as a whole, has let us down. We’ve got to cut that out and start doing things better.

“The energy levels were good again, we had a go, and the pitch was difficult. They (Woking) are a younger team than us, they’ve got energy and they changed it around a bit, so give them credit. But ultimately it’s down to us.

“For the amount of experience we’ve got in that dressing room, these things shouldn’t happen.”

While it was thrilling festive fayre for the 2,067 crowd, it was yet another missed opportunity for Eastleigh who have now drawn 13 league games and picked up just five points from the last available 21 on home soil.

Zebroski and recalled winger Mark Yeates oozed quality going forward, but the Spitfires struggled to cope with Effiong’s strength and Woking's pace - albeit that sub James Constable hit the woodwork as a prelude to Howe’s late leveller.

Victory at Torquay tomorrow (Monday, 3pm) is now vital if Hessenthaler’s target of two points per game is to be achieved.

“We’ve put that bit of extra pressure on ourselves,” he said. “We have to go to Torquay and win."

Eastleigh are likely to travel without goalkeeper Graham Stack and striker Paul McCallum, who both bowed out with groin trouble on Saturday.

Eastleigh: Graham Stack (Ross Flitney, 46), Gavin Hoyte, Sam Wood, Danny Hollands (James Constable, 84), Andrew Boyce, Callum Howe, Cav Miley, Sam Matthews, Chris Zebroski, Paul McCallum (Craig McAllister, 73), Mark Yeates. Subs (not used): Ayo Obileye, Bradley Hudson-Odoi.

Referee: Chris O’Donnell.

Attendance. 2,067.