On Tuesday night, Chelsea marked their return to the Champions League, with a comprehensive 6-0 drubbing of Qarabag.
The Premier League champions were expected to defeat the Azerbaijan side easily, but went about their business ruthlessly.
Goals from Pedro, Davide Zappacosta, Cesar Azpilicueta, substitute Tiemoue Bakayoko and a Michy Batshuayi double ensured a comfortable return to Europe’s elite after last season’s first absence since 2003-04.
Zappacosta’s 30th-minute strike was the highlight of the game.
The Italian, signed on deadline day from Torino and making his Champions League debut, struck from wide on the right. It appeared to be an attempted cross, which flew into the net.
“Zappacosta – he scores when he wants,” sang the Chelsea faithful.
His overall performance puts pressure on Victor Moses, who was Antonio Conte’s number one right wingback last season.
Moses was left on the bench for the entire 90 minutes of the game.
Conte had hinted that he will make significant changes to his team.
The Blues’ return to Champions League action falls within a gruelling September run of seven matches in 21 days across three competitions.
After Qarabag, Conte must prepare his squad for the visit of rivals Arsenal, to Stamford Bridge on Sunday.
It remains to be seen if the Super Eagles star’s place is under threat by Zappacosta, after a fine display on Tuesday.