Chelsea took a significant step to reaching the semi-finals of the Women’s Champions League after Guro Reiten fired her side to a 1-0 first-leg win at Lyon.
Reiten broke the quarter-final deadlock at the Parc Olympique Lyonnais when she curled in a fine effort after 28 minutes.
The French side, who have won the Champions League in six of the past seven seasons, hit the woodwork in the second half.
But Emma Hayes’ side held on in a hostile atmosphere to carry the advantage into next week’s return leg at Stamford Bridge – despite England defender Millie Bright hobbling off with an injury in the first half.
Chelsea are on course to take a fourth successive Women’s Super League title following a fine campaign. But success in the Champions League is the only major honour that still evades boss Hayes.
However, the Blues will now be the favourites to reach the last four after Reiten picked up Erin Cuthbert’s fantastic assist and curled a cute effort past Lyon goalkeeper Christiane Endler in the first half.
Moments later, the rampant visitors almost doubled their lead when Lauren James’ effort bounced off the post.
Eight-time winners Lyon dominated the second period, and came close to an equaliser when Chelsea failed to clear their lines and Delphine Cascarino’s shot struck the woodwork.
Chelsea had several chances to put the game, and possibly the tie to bed, but they failed to strike a decisive second.
However, the English champions survived three minutes of stoppage time to see out a pivotal victory on French soil, with the two sides meeting again in west London on March 30.