Chelsea move up to 2nd in WSL title race after 3-1 win over Brighton

Chelsea move up to 2nd in WSL title race after 3-1 win over Brighton by  Michelle

Chelsea were hurting after missing out on a first major trophy of the season, with Hayes admitting her stars did not match Arsenal’s desire at the weekend. Chelsea put their League Cup final defeat to Arsenal behind them to beat Brighton and move one point behind Women’s Super League leaders Manchester United.

Chelsea boss Emma Hayes got the response she demanded as Chelsea moved up to second in the table before Sunday’s home game against Manchester United.

Managerless Brighton fell behind to Guro Reiten’s penalty before Jess Carter doubled the hosts’ lead.

Johanna Rytting Kaneryd added a third before Danielle Carter’s consolation.

The Blues dominated despite making seven changes to the side who were beaten by Arsenal at Selhurst Park on Sunday.

Sweden winger Kaneryd had an early attempt cleared off the line when the game was goalless, Jelena Cankovic clipped the bar and Sam Kerr had an attempt ruled out for offside.

Brighton, who announced manager Jens Scheuer’s departure on Monday by mutual consent after only two months in charge, hit the bar after half-time through Elisabeth Terland. They remain 11th in the table on eight points, two more than bottom club Leicester City.

Chelsea are very much in the hunt for a fourth successive WSL title with Sunday’s game against Manchester United – which is live on BBC Two at 12:30 GMT – a fixture of huge significance at the top.

Chelsea, who have a game in hand on the leaders, have won 11 times in an unbeaten 12-match league run.

This result – and response – was just what Hayes wanted before a crucial three weeks which also includes a Champions League quarter-final against holders Lyon and an FA Cup quarter-final at Reading.

The only surprise was that Kerr – one of four survivors from the starting XI against Arsenal – failed to find the net after scoring 11 times in her previous six games.

Michelle Maxwell

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