Manchester City 3 Brighton and Hove Albion 1
Manchester City recorded a sixth successive Women’s Super League victory as they beat Brighton 3-1 at the Academy Stadium, with all their goals coming in the opening half-hour.
City went ahead in the 11th minute when the ball went in off Veatriki Sarri for an own goal following Chloe Kelly’s corner.
Julie Blakstad then headed in from a Kelly delivery to double the lead after 19 minutes and Laura Coombs added a strike seven minutes later.
Brighton pulled a goal back in stoppage time via former City player Lee Geum-min from close range.
The result saw the gap between Gareth Taylor’s fourth-placed side and the Champions League spots narrowed to three points. Meanwhile, Brighton slipped two places to 11th.
City ended a modest unbeaten run under the interim management of Amy Merricks. She stepped in at the end of October after Hope Powell departed.
Reading leapfrogged the Seagulls, moving up to 10th, having beaten Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 at the Select Car Leasing Stadium courtesy of a 12th-minute Amy Turner own goal.
Liverpool also rose a place, to ninth, after a 2-0 home win over West Ham United.
Ceri Holland fired the Reds in front in the third minute and Katie Stengel’s finish doubled the advantage in the 20th.