Match ends, Manchester City Women 3, Brighton and Hove Albion Women 1.
Manchester City kept up the pressure on the top three in the Women's Super League with a comfortable home win over Brighton.
All three goals for the hosts came inside the first 26 minutes as Gareth Taylor's fourth-placed side made a blistering start at the Academy Stadium.
City were imperious in the first half with England forward Chloe Kelly at the heart of everything.
Kelly's in-swinging corner led to the opening goal as Brighton goalkeeper Megan Walsh fumbled a regulation take and the ball went in off Seagulls' midfielder Veatriki Sarri in the 11th minute.
Julie Blakstad doubled the lead eight minutes later with a superb diving header to divert Kelly's left-footed cross-cum-shot into the bottom corner.
Then, with Brighton reeling, Laura Coombs added a third on 26 minutes with a fierce strike from 20 yards out that gave Walsh no chance.
City could have added to their lead before the break and would have done were it not for a fine save from Walsh to deny Coombs in stoppage time, while Deyna Castellanos hit the post early in the second half.
Brighton were much improved after the restart, though, and were rewarded for their efforts by Lee Geum-min's scrambled consolation in the final minute.
Victory took City back to within three points of Manchester United and Arsenal in second and third place, while Brighton drop to second bottom.
Kelly shows star quality to torment Brighton
It is highly likely Lionesses forward Kelly has already lived the moment for which she will most be remembered.
Scoring to win England the Euros in extra-time at Wembley really was the stuff of dreams.
But at 24, Kelly has time to create many more memorable moments and, on this showing, you expect they won't be too far away.
Super sub in that famous triumph against Germany, everything she did against Brighton suggests Kelly can shine further on the international stage.
You had to feel for Brighton left-back Poppy Pattinson with the way Kelly seemed to toy with her throughout the opening half, cutting inside one minute before bursting past her on the outside the next.
One particular jinking run early in the game had Pattinson in such a tangle it was impressive she even managed to stay on her feet.
With the game won, Kelly was withdrawn on the hour mark, but still created seven chances in the game - four more than anyone else.
She might not have been able to cap her performance with a goal but she was the creator supreme, both for herself and others.
Man City Women
- 2CasparijSubstituted forMorganat 61'minutesBooked at 90mins
- 15OuahabiBooked at 52mins
- 10CastellanosSubstituted forMaceat 73'minutes
- 7CoombsSubstituted forAngeldahlat 45'minutes
- 9KellySubstituted forRasoat 61'minutes
- 7SarriBooked at 33minsSubstituted forBanceat 85'minutes
- Cheryl Foster
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Manchester City Women 3, Brighton and Hove Albion Women 1.
Goal! Manchester City Women 3, Brighton and Hove Albion Women 1. Lee Geum-Min (Brighton and Hove Albion Women) left footed shot from very close range to the centre of the goal following a set piece situation.
Lee Geum-Min (Brighton and Hove Albion Women) hits the right post with a right footed shot from the centre of the box. Assisted by Poppy Pattinson following a set piece situation.
Esme Morgan (Manchester City Women) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Foul by Esme Morgan (Manchester City Women).
Katie Robinson (Brighton and Hove Albion Women) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Corner, Manchester City Women. Conceded by Poppy Pattinson.
Attempt blocked. Esme Morgan (Manchester City Women) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.
Attempt blocked. Filippa Angeldahl (Manchester City Women) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Hayley Raso with a headed pass.
Attempt missed. Julie Blakstad (Manchester City Women) left footed shot from very close range is too high. Assisted by Hayley Raso.
Attempt missed. Hayley Raso (Manchester City Women) right footed shot from the right side of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Esme Morgan with a headed pass.
Substitution, Brighton and Hove Albion Women. Libby Bance replaces Veatriki Sarri.
Foul by Ruby Mace (Manchester City Women).
Megan Connolly (Brighton and Hove Albion Women) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Attempt saved. Khadija Shaw (Manchester City Women) header from very close range is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Hayley Raso with a cross.
Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion Women. Conceded by Alex Greenwood.
Foul by Ruby Mace (Manchester City Women).
Lee Geum-Min (Brighton and Hove Albion Women) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Substitution, Manchester City Women. Ruby Mace replaces Deyna Castellanos.