Chelsea made their Champions League return in sublime fashion on Tuesday with a thumping 6-0 win over Qarabag at Stamford Bridge.
The Blues – who will also contend with Atletico Madrid and Roma in Group C – outclassed their Azerbaijani opponents to get their European campaign off an impressive start.
While the match was all but over as a contest within 30 minutes thanks to goals from Pedro and Davide Zappacosta, the home fans were treated to four more strikes from Cesar Azpilicueta, Tiemoue Bakayoko, Michy Batshuayi and a Qarabag own goal.
Antonio Conte couldn't have asked for a more convincing performance from his men despite the obvious gulf in quality between the two teams.
The Chelsea boss was understandably delighted in his post-match press conference ahead of a prepares to take on Arsenal in West London this Sunday.
“It was a good start, a perfect start for us,” Conte told the official club website.
“To play the first game in the Champions League, to win with a good result, to score many goals and finish the game with a clean sheet - I saw a lot of positive things tonight.”
Chelsea came under serious scrutiny during the summer for failing to address their lack of depth in several key positions.
Only time will tell if the Premier League champions have a squad capable of competing on all four fronts this season, but one club legend has already seen enough to believe they can.
Asked whether Chelsea are capable of juggling domestic and European commitments, Frank Lampard responded with an answer of certainty.
As reported by the Daily Mail, he said: “I think they do. They're the unknowns. We talk about [Alvaro] Morata being their main man. He's the form man and he needs to stay injury-free, especially for sure.
“They are very well drilled. I do fancy their chances of going far because they are so well drilled and can defend, which we kept talking about before.”
EDEN HAZARD QUALITY
The Stamford Bridge icon then focussed on Eden Hazard – who continued his recovery from injury with a half-hour cameo on Tuesday evening.
The Belgian is expected to add another dimension to an already threatening Chelsea side once he returns to full fitness, but Lampard reckons he’ll go on to reach even greater heights.
“A great plus today with [Eden] Hazard who came on at the weekend and came on again today,” he said.
“I feel that he'll be involved at the weekend and going forward. He's the magic in the Chelsea team.
“If Eden Hazard's on his game he's got the magic that we talk about with the Messi's and Ronaldo's - he can get towards that level.”
Lampard has experienced his quality first-hand during two seasons alongside him at Stamford Bridge, so who better to know what Hazard can achieve.
Will Hazard ever be as good as Messi and Ronaldo? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
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