A NERVY Chelsea win showed that there very well may be life after Didier Drogba – but that it might not always be easy to watch.
With the Ivorian away for up to a month at the African Nations Cup - and rumours suggesting he may never return to Stamford Bridge - it was up to Fernando Torres to show he was able to shoulder the burden of being the Blues' sole senior striker.
And, putting in his best performance in a Blue shirt, he was able to do that, despite yet again failing to score himself.
Just before the quarter hour mark, Torres, on the left side of the box, deftly swivelled to scissor-kick the ball onto the underside of the bar and Lampard was in the right place to score what turned out to be the winner.
It was a moment of brilliance from Torres, of the type rarely seen since his arrival at Stamford Bridge.
But more was to follow.
During a first-half of few chances, those which came, were inevitably down to the Spaniard.
Whether swivelling and shooting, taking long-range pot-shots, or heading on-goal, he produced arguably his best overall performance since joining Blues just over a year ago.
The visitors seemed to grab the game by the scruff of the neck after the break.
Chelsea's defence was, more than once, caught napping: notably when James McClean missed an absolute sitter following a Jose Bosingwa howler.
New signing Gary Cahill, expected to be confirmed as a Chelsea player on Monday, looked on from the directors box – and hopefully with an eye as to how to improve matters at the back.