Beth England scored her 13th goal of the season to help Chelsea beat Birmingham and maintain their unbeaten Women’s Super League record.
Chelsea’s fifth straight league win keeps the pressure on top-of-the-table Manchester City before the meeting between the sides on 23 February.
Norway international Guro Reiten gave Chelsea the lead just before half-time.
England made the points safe 13 minutes into the second half with a strong run and a sweeping right-foot finish.
Victories for both Chelsea and Manchester City maintained the single-point gap between the sides, with Chelsea still having a game in hand.
It was a fourth consecutive defeat for Birmingham and they remain only a point above bottom side Bristol City, who they host in their own vitally important game on 23 February.
The visitors were initially quite comfortable and saw England midfielder Lucy Staniforth fire over, but Chelsea’s opening goal saw them seize complete control of the game.
Jonna Andersson’s cross from the left was flicked on by Sophie Ingle and fell to Reiten, whose neat touch created space to slide home from eight yards out.
Drew Spence forced an excellent save from Birmingham goalkeeper Hannah Hampton diving to her left but it was England, the league’s second-highest scorer, who settled the contest.
A clever first-time ball from Scotland’s Erin Cuthbert freed England, who headed forward, drove into the penalty area and coolly slotted past Hampton.