Sam Kerr’s header was enough for Women’s Super League champions Chelsea to see off a determined Brighton and extend their unbeaten league run to 29 matches.
Kerr steered in Pernille Harder’s cross midway through the first half.
Brighton always remained in the contest and came close to equalising when Inessa Kaagman hit the bar.
But the Blues stayed firm to collect another win to stay three points behind leaders Manchester United.
Chelsea, who have a game in hand on United, had needed an injury-time goal to avoid defeat on their previous visit to Crawley Town’s People’s Pension Stadium, where Brighton play their home games.
That 1-1 draw in September 2019 was one of the rare times Chelsea looked like being beaten in the WSL over the last two years, and Brighton were competitive again this season.
Kerr’s perfectly placed header settled matters in Chelsea’s favour, but they survived a scare when Kaagman’s clever turn on the edge of the box gave her space to shoot and rattle the bar.
Australian Kerr was always a threat and had a couple of chances to make the afternoon more comfortable as Brighton failed to make their late pressure tell.
- 6Le Tissier
- 13StottSubstituted forKerkdijkat 45′minutes
- 11HeroumSubstituted forSimpkinsat 66′minutes
- 9LeeSubstituted forBowmanat 76′minutes
- 10JiSubstituted forIngleat 66′minutes
- 23HarderSubstituted forEnglandat 80′minutes
- 22CuthbertSubstituted forReitenat 66′minutes
- Lisa Benn
Match ends, Brighton and Hove Albion Women 0, Chelsea Women 1.
Second Half ends, Brighton and Hove Albion Women 0, Chelsea Women 1.
Offside, Chelsea Women. Jonna Andersson tries a through ball, but Fran Kirby is caught offside.
Offside, Brighton and Hove Albion Women. Felicity Gibbons tries a through ball, but Ellie Brazil is caught offside.
Attempt blocked. Beth England (Chelsea Women) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Jonna Andersson.
Attempt missed. Emily Simpkins (Brighton and Hove Albion Women) right footed shot from more than 35 yards is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Denise O’Sullivan.
Attempt missed. Guro Reiten (Chelsea Women) left footed shot from long range on the left is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Beth England.
Attempt missed. Emily Simpkins (Brighton and Hove Albion Women) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Maya Le Tissier.
Substitution, Chelsea Women. Beth England replaces Pernille Harder.
Foul by Melanie Leupolz (Chelsea Women).
Maya Le Tissier (Brighton and Hove Albion Women) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Pernille Harder (Chelsea Women) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Maya Le Tissier (Brighton and Hove Albion Women).
Substitution, Brighton and Hove Albion Women. Danielle Bowman replaces Lee Geum-Min.
Magdalena Eriksson (Chelsea Women) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Aileen Whelan (Brighton and Hove Albion Women).
Foul by Fran Kirby (Chelsea Women).
Inessa Kaagman (Brighton and Hove Albion Women) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Corner, Chelsea Women. Conceded by Danique Kerkdijk.
Attempt saved. Guro Reiten (Chelsea Women) left footed shot from long range on the right is saved in the centre of the goal.
Join Telegram Watch Online Web Series