Victor Moses and Gary Cahill helped Chelsea to grapple with a new 3-4-3 formation before turning on the style in a 2-0 win at Hull City.
Following three Premier League matches without a win, Antonio Conte reverted to the defensive set-up he used to such fine effect in charge of Juventus and Italy.
Cahill, captain in John Terry’s continued absence, lined up on the left-hand side of the back three and Moses, making a first Chelsea start in the top flight since May 2013, was deployed in the unfamiliar position of right wing-back.
Speaking after superb second-half finishes from Willian and the in-form Diego Costa sealed the points, Moses said of his new role: “There’s a lot to do, but I have to graft, go up and down and I kind of enjoy it, getting a lot of one-on-one situations.”
Cahill, who will expect to have Terry for company after the international break, feels his team-mates will take time to be fully comfortable with their alternative shape under Conte.
“It is different doing it on the training pitch than in the game situations,” he said.
“It took some getting used to, you don’t get used to it overnight. But in the second half we weren’t really threatened.
“We go into the international break with three points and a good feeling.”