Carlo Ancelotti confirmed that Chelsea have "turned the corner" following the 4-0 drubbing of Bolton at the Reebok Stadium - then set his sights on beating Manchester United.
Florent Malouda and Nicolas Anelka followed up a stupendous early opener from Didier Drogba before Ramires capped a fine night for the Blues when he scored his first goal for the club. The result leaves Chelsea seven points adrift of United, who also have a game in hand.
"That is the end of the bad moment. It was an important performance and now we have to look forward with confidence," said Ancelotti.
"To close the gap is not going to be easy. At this moment Manchester United are so far in front.
"But step by step, we can do it, although obviously we have to win the games against them."
Chelsea will feel more bullish about achieving that aim with Drogba in his present mood.
A season scarred by contracting malaria seemed to be passing the Ivorian by until Monday evening.
His 35-yard rocket shot did not give the impression of a man low in confidence. And Ancelotti was delighted to see it fly past Jussi Jaaskelainen.
"Finally Didier Drogba played a fantastic match," said Ancelotti. "It was a fantastic goal.
"His power and personality are very important for this team. It is crucial that he came back fit and dangerous."