Hiddink secures first win at Chelsea helm

Champions Chelsea rediscovered the winning habit with a 3-0 victory at Crystal Palace to move away from trouble at the foot of the English Premier League football table.

Oscar, Willian and Diego Costa scored the goals for caretaker manager Guus Hiddink's first official win, lifting them to 14th, six points from safety.

Tottenham lost ground on the top three as they could only draw 1-1 at Everton in this morning's other match.

"This was the Chelsea of last year," Chelsea captain John Terry told reporters after only their second away win of the season.

"The football was first class and we kept the ball in tough conditions. A near year, a new start, we just have to keep winning games now. We are delighted and it is the feeling we want.

"Guus has been great since he has come in. It was unfortunate what happened (with Jose Mourinho being sacked) but he has come in and picked everyone up.

"We are where we are, we have not dwelled on it. If we can put together a run of games, who knows, hopefully we can go a long way." Chelsea were dominant throughout against a seventh-placed Palace side who would have gone fifth with a win.

Oscar turned in Costa's simple ball inside to put Chelsea in front on 29 minutes and Willian slammed in the second after an hour, finding the top corner from just outside the box.

Willian then set up Costa for the third as his initial cross-shot was spilled and Chelsea could have added to their total.

Hiddink was delighted with the win and said Chelsea, 13 points off a top-four spot, had not given up hopes on qualifying for the Champions League again.

"Do not go over the top," he said.

"It is the first win after a worrying period with two draws. The team desperately needed the win and it was convincing, "Everyone knows we have a lot of quality in our team but sometimes champions have a tendency to be complacent and it can be difficult to get back and then wonder why we were champions.

"There is a long way to go (and) mathematically the possibility of Champions League is still there. The league is so strong but as long as we play like we did today I will be happy." Palace manager Alan Pardew said his side were well beaten.

"We were not at our strongest today, we were missing key players and could not play our natural game," he said.

"We will be looking at the market in case something comes through.

"It is important we kick into gear in the second-half of the season.

"Things did not go our way today and we have to respond and I have every confidence in this group that we will be in and around the top 10."

Tottenham remain fourth but are now three points behind Manchester City in third after a 1-1 draw at Everton.

A brilliant volley from Dele Alli gave Tottenham a point after former Spurs winger Aaron Lennon had half-volleyed the home side in front.

Everton remain 11th.


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