Michael Essien has made his comeback from a knee injury after turning out for Chelsea's reserves against West Brom on Monday.
The Ghana international featured for 75 minutes of the game which Chelsea lost 3-2.
It was his first appearance in six months, having suffered a third serious knee problem in July
Essien had to undergo surgery after rupturing the anterior cruciate ligament and meniscus in his right knee during pre-season training.
Essien's return to fitness came too late for him to make the Ghana squad for the African Cup of Nations which begins on 21st January.
But Blues manager Andre Villas-Boas will be delighted to see the midfielder closing in on a first-team comeback as he prepares for the second half of the Premier League season.