Jose Mourinho’s second spell as Chelsea manager got under way with a 1-0 win over Singha All-Stars on Wednesday.
A first-half Romelu Lukaku penalty proved the difference between the sides over 90 minutes, but Mourinho will surely be pleased with his side’s efforts during a testing encounter.
The visitors named a strong team ahead of their maiden pre-season fixture, with the likes of John Terry, Ashley Cole and Petr Cech all included.
However, Ramires became a late addition to the XI named by Mourinho 24 hours prior to kick-off after Frank Lampard sustained an injury during the warm-up.
Despite that setback, Chelsea started brightly and almost got themselves ahead with just over a quarter of an hour played when a Michael Essien header crashed back off the crossbar.
Mourinho’s men would get their breakthrough with 33 minutes gone, though, as Brazilian prospect Wallace’s jinking run enticed a late challenge in the box and the referee pointed to the spot.
Lukaku, who is looking to impress at his parent club after a season spent on loan at West Brom, stepped up to dispatch the spot-kick and give his team a lead they would take into half-time.
Ramires and Kevin de Bruyne were the only two men to keep their places at the break , with Marco van Ginkel, Demba Ba and Eden Hazard among those introduced.
But it was the hosts who would create the better chances in the second period, with Bukasa Kasonga’s close-range header arguably the best of those.
He failed to convert, however, as Chelsea saw the game out to hold onto an encouraging result against a team who beat Manchester United only last week.