Chelsea defeated Everton 1-0 at Goodison Park, for their first victory there since 2017 thanks to a Jorginho first-half penalty.
Ben Chilwell’s move into the area was stopped by Abdoulaye Doucoure’s clumsy block, and Jorginho converted from the penalty spot to score the Blues’ third opening-weekend goal.
A nasty early injury sustained by Ben Godfrey in a challenge with Kai Havertz, which required him to be carried off and brought to the hospital, added more than eight minutes of first-half injury time before that goal.
Without a designated striker on the field, the hosts found it difficult to compete in open play, but from two corners, James Tarkowski forced Edouard Mendy to make a fingertip save before Doucoure forced a superb leaping save from the Chelsea goalkeeper.
Everton’s Demarai Gray also beat Thiago Silva in a footrace into the area in a rare promising moment during open play, but the home team lacked the talent to find a way through and they lost on the first day of the season for the first time since 2012.
Chelsea never needed to touch the heights to beat Everton but manager Tuchel will still be delighted to simply start the season with a win after a turbulent summer.
Raheem Sterling showed in flashes what he will bring while powerhouse defender Koulibaly was able to ease his way into the Premier League against the blunt instrument that was Everton’s attack.
Chelsea did not cause Everton too many serious problems but this game was effectively over as a contest because the visiting defence had too much know-how and the home team lacked nous.
Cucurella’s debut was only notable for a yellow card after he kicked the ball away in the dying moments as Chelsea ran down the clock against an increasingly frustrated Everton.
Chelsea will be looking to bring in more new faces before the close of the transfer window and have been linked with a succession of names – even though this still represents a very strong squad.
It is all about the result on the opening day and achieving it by whatever means possible, a mission which Chelsea accomplished with plenty to spare.