A comfortable win kicked off the season with the damage to newly promoted Hull done during a bright first half.
Oscar scored our first goal of the campaign followed by a stunning free-kick from Frank Lampard, atoning in style for an early saved penalty.
Our all-time record scorer went close again later in the game and good goalkeeping prevented a bigger win, as did greater resistance from the visitors after the break.
Jose Mourinho handed three players their first Chelsea competitive games, Kevin De Bruyne making a full debut and Andre Schurrle and Marco van Ginkel introduced in the second half.
Mourinho opted for Fernando Torres to lead the attack. De Bruyne began on the right of the three attacking supporting players, with Oscar in the centre and Eden Hazard on the left.
Terry captained from the back with Gary Cahill alongside him. David Luiz was out injured. Branislav Ivanovic was chosen at right-back in preference to Cesar Azpilicueta who had travelled to Ecuador and back with Spain midweek. Juan Mata was passed fit enough to make the bench.
Hull’s recent signings from Spurs, Tom Huddlestone and Jake Livermore, were on the bench but there was room for five players brought in during the summer in Steve Bruce’s starting selection.
The Bridge was buzzing at kick-off – plenty of the noise naturally for Mourinho who emerged from the tunnel to a roar that sounded like a goal had been scored. The manager responded by blowing kisses to the crowd.
Terry kept the feelgood factor going by stepping in front of Hull debutant Danny Graham to win his first challenge, and Hazard was awarded a free-kick when pushed over on his first run. De Bruyne struck the opening shot of the match – and cleared the bar.
Hazard had a fourth-minute shot blocked by McGregor just seconds before the Hull keeper truly took centre stage, both giving away and then saving the early penalty. His offence was to catch Torres in the face with his arm when rushing out from his goalmouth. His save was low down to his right as Lampard’s shot was not far enough in the corner.
The wait for the first goal of our season continued as Hazard, found by De Bruyne, didn’t catch his shot and then Oscar dragged an effort wide. It was 0-0 with 10 minutes gone but Chelsea were putting plenty of pressure on the Shed End goal.
Hull resistance broke two minutes later. A high ball towards the corner by Terry was collected by Hazard who used his power and low centre of gravity to drive infield. De Bruyne showed quick feet and vision to push the ball onto Oscar who finished low and first time. It was, quick, incisive, penetrating football.
The Chelsea attack was hitting top gear and a sublime interchange between Oscar and Hazard led to Lampard drawing a diving save from McGregor.
On that occasion the Scotland international had the inches to deal with it. He didn’t on 22 minutes when Lampard made it 2-0 with a free-kick any keeper would have struggled with. Torres was fouled 30 yards out and from a central position, our record scorer struck one that swerved and dipped before crashing into the net. It was not too far short of the quality of Lampard’s FA Cup semi-final free-kick against Spurs.
These Hull Tigers continued to look pretty toothless for the rest of the half while Chelsea could have added to our lead had Ivanovic been able head Oscar’s pass into the path of the well-positioned Torres. On the stroke of half-time, Lampard had another shot saved by the keeper after Torres had turned a pass through the Hull backline, and then McGregor performed wonders to keep out Ivanovic’s header at a corner. This season’s new technology was called into action, and it showed the ball was saved on rather than over the live.
Despite not testing McGregor, the Blues continued to dominate proceedings in the first 15 minutes after the restart so Hull made a double substitution. It was their recent signings from Tottenham who came on – Huddlestone replacing Meyler and Livermore on for Graham, with Yannick Sagbo moving from the wing to centre-forward.
There was a good case for a second penalty of the afternoon when Ivanovic appeared to be shoved over by Robbie Brady but a goal-kick was awarded instead, that incident coming during a spell when the visitors made Chelsea defend. Cech had saved a low dig from their skipper Robert Koren and Lampard blocked an effort at a corner.
On 66 minutes, Andre Schurrle made his Chelsea debut as a replacement for De Bruyne who had shown his powerful shooting is likely to be a feature of the season ahead.
On 72 minutes, Hull went their closest to scoring – centre-back Curtis Davies heading crisply on-target with Cech needing to save well.
The first-half freshness in Chelsea’s attacking play had dimmed a little since the break and Mourinho brought on Romelu Lukaku for Torres with quarter of an hour left to play. Moments later Schurrle could have scored but his lob over the keeper also just cleared the bar, Ramires having measured a first-time pass into the German’s path.
Lampard then went very close again with another free-kick from long range. A Huddlestone free-kick at the other end soon after didn’t compare.
In the closing stages Van Ginkel made it three Chelsea debuts on the day and played in an advanced role behind Lukaku.
Comprehensive victories at the Bridge were a feature of the first Mourinho era, and the second one has begun that way.
Chelsea (4-2-3-1): Cech, Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry (c) Cole; Ramires, Lampard; De Bruyne (Schurrle 66), Oscar (Van Ginkel 84), Hazard; Torres (Lukaku 74).
Unused subs Schwarzer, Essien, Mata, Ba,.
Scorers Oscar 12, Lampard 22.
Hull (4-3-3): McGregor; Elmohamady, Chester, Davies, Figueroa; Koren, Meyler (Huddlestone 58), Brady; Aluko (Boyd 78), Graham (Livermore 58), Sagbo.
Unused subs Harper, Rosenior, McShane, Bruce.
Booked Meyler 39
Referee Jonathon Moss