There was never really any doubt that Chelsea would get their Premier League campaign off to a winning start.
The Blues kicked off against Steve Bruce's newly-promoted Hull City side at Stamford Bridge, a ground where Jose Mourinho has never lost a league game.
The comfortable 2-0 win- via goals from Oscar and Frank Lampard- gave Chelsea fans their first real glimpse of Belgian midfielder Kevin de Bruyne and German forward Andre Schurrle in action, and they were treated to a performance that involved scintillating movement of the ball from the home side. The Hull midfielders were often left chasing the shadows of the likes of Lampard, Oscar, De Bruyne and the impressive Eden Hazard.
This game will probably not have taught Mourinho anything new about the squad at his disposal, except for two things, the first being that he still needs to work with former Liverpool striker Fernando Torres to bring him to the level expected of him. Secondly, the game probably served as a reaffirmation of a fact we all knew to be true weeks before kick-off on Sunday, which is that the strength in depth of Chelsea's squad is unparalleled.
Considering that the likes of David Luiz, Juan Mata, Cesar Azpilicueta, John Obi Mikel, Michael Essien, Demba Ba and Victor Moses did not even feature in the game shows just how much quality runs through this side.
Mourinho will undoubtedly be guaranteed a severe headache every time he chooses his starting XI prior to a game, although it is fair to say he won't be complaining too much about this.
One player who severely compounded the Portuguese manager's selection problems with his performance on Sunday was the man who opened the floodgates for Mourinho's second stint as Chelsea's manager, Oscar.
Oscar's first season at Chelsea saw him play on the right side of a three-pronged attacking midfield, partnering Juan Mata and Hazard.
While Oscar acquitted himself well and quickly became a fan-favourite for his willingness to put in a shift when required and his tendency to score spectacular goals, you couldn't help but get the feeling that there was more that could be expected of the man who signed from Internacional for close to £20million pounds in the summer of 2012.
Much of these unfulfilled expectations could be attributed to the excellent performances of Spaniard Juan Mata, a player who was almost always assured of the central attacking midfielder's role in the Starting XI owing to his superb creativity and ability to pick the killer pass.
Mata's stranglehold on Oscar's favourite position meant that the Brazilian was forced out wide, a position in which he was never truly comfortable.
However, the first game of the 2013/14 season afforded Oscar the chance to prove his worth to Chelsea in the position he traditionally favours and occupies in the Starting XI of the Brazilian national team.
Juan Mata was left on the bench by Mourinho in a move that is sure to spark further fervent discussions regarding the Spaniard's future at Chelsea following reports earlier in the summer that he was no longer considered to be an indispensable member of the squad.
Mata's absence, most likely due to his exertions for the Spanish national team during mid-week, afforded Oscar the chance to shine at the centre of Chelsea's attacking midfield, and the Brazilian did not disappoint.
From the very beginning, Oscar was involved in precise one-twos and intricate moves with Eden Hazard, Fernando Torres and Frank Lampard, and displayed excellent awareness of his position on the pitch.
At times a second striker behind Torres, feeding off loose balls and misplaced passes, Oscar did not hesitate to track back and help the likes of Ramires and Lampard retain possession deep in midfield.
His goal, coming in the 12th minute of the first half, displayed his ability to time runs from deep in his own half to perfection, as well as his positioning and finishing.
Blessed with excellent vision, ball control and the ability to read a game, Oscar is the perfect player for the central role in attacking midfield, and his ability to drift to either wing or to a more defensive central position make him a very useful player tactically, as he can provide the extra body where required.
Oscar has been compared to the likes of Mesut Ozil and Kaka for his fluid style of play and excellent vision, and will flourish if he is allowed to play in his favoured position. The Brazilian's speed and ability to operate in the space between the centre of the pitch and the wings, a position from where he can link up with wingers or the striker, is perfect for the counter-attacking football that Mourinho will no doubt want his Chelsea side to play.
Needless to say, Juan Mata will still probably be the team's first-choice play-maker when fully fit, but Oscar has already done enough to stake his claim to that role in the team. As Chelsea tackle their dual responsibilities of domestic and continental cup competitions this season with a relatively young squad, Oscar will have a crucial role to play in the team, and his first year playing under Jose Mourinho could prove to be his best so far.
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