In the blink of an eye, three had become four, and Reiten had another assist to her name. This time it was a curling free-kick from the right that evaded a sea of bodies in the penalty box, allowing Eriksson to come round the back to steer it home with a tidy finish.
The Villans finally registered a shot, with the game well and truly out of their reach, as Iwabuchi forced Telford into an excellent save with her legs, and then came another proud moment for Hayes on a night when her side made history.
Having brought on one Academy graduate, Drew Spence, for her 201st appearance, she then handed debuts to another duo who have come up through the ranks. It was a moment neither Fox or Beever-Jones would ever forget, as they were introduced in place of Charles and Reiten.
We almost had a fifth late on, as Kerr pounced on a sloppy pass and smashed a shot that took a deflection and only narrowly missed the target, but in the end it was immaterial. Our incredible run of unbeaten matches in the WSL had reached 32, a mark never before achieved in the competition, and we were back at the top of the table.
The Blues are next in action on Sunday, when we host Tottenham Hotspur at Kingsmeadow. The game kicks off at 12.30pm and fans in the UK can tune in via the BBC Red Button.
Aston Villa (4-3-3) Weiss; Ale, N’Dow, Asante, Haigh; Haywood (Follis 76), Ewers (c) (West 63), Hayles; Iwabuchi, Larsen, Hanssen (Silva 84)
Unused subs Rogers, Hutton, Syme, McLoughlin
Booked Hanssen 45
Chelsea (4-2-3-1) Telford; Mjelde, Bright, Eriksson (c), Charles (Fox 84); Ingle, Fleming; Kerr, Harder (Spence 73), Reiten (Beever-Jones 84); England
Unused subs Berger, Leupolz, Ji, Kirby, Andersson
Scorers Kerr 3, England 35, Harder 68, Eriksson 70
Booked Bright 71
Referee Helen Conley