Guus Hiddink hailed the performance of Alexandre Pato, who scored one and set up two, in Chelsea’s 4-0 win over Aston Villa.
The striker, who joined Chelsea in January on loan from Brazilian club Corinthians, marked his first appearance for the Blues with a goal in the final minute of the first half. After Aly Cissokho had barged into the back of him, Pato picked himself up to score from the penalty spot.
Less than a minute into the second half, Chelsea had a third. Pato and fellow substitute Oscar, on at half-time for Kenedy, combined down the left side of the penalty area and Pedro turned in Oscar’s low cross from close range.
Pedro netted his second of the game just before the hour mark and Pato was involved again. His curling shot was saved by Brad Guzan but he did not get enough on it and Pedro clipped in the rebound from an acute angle inside the six-yard box.
Hiddink said: “It was good to see him coming in. I could have brought him in earlier but now with his physical condition he can show his quality and that is why he has come in the team relatively late.
“It was not the most toughest game, you have to take that into consideration, so we will see how he copes against more resistance.
“He has been suffering, literally, doing extra work with the fitness coach and other coaches and the other players see that and are happy for him so they are relieved to see him score his first goal.”