John Terry has warned Chelsea's Premiership rivals that the champions have lost none of their desire as they chase a hat-trick of titles.
The Blues started their campaign with a resounding 3-0 win over Manchester City despite Jose Mourinho's pre-match fears that his team were not ready.
It was a ruthless display to silence the doubters who thought Mourinho's summer transfer spree and tactical changes might upset Chelsea's dressing room harmony.
Liverpool beat them in the FA Community Shield but the champions can boast an early two-point advantage on the Merseysiders.
Terry said: 'After the Community Shield, maybe a few people said Chelsea are beatable.
'Any team is beatable but we bounced back and showed the character we have shown the last two years.
'If we get that character, get the football and get the team spirit we have had the last couple of years, we have a very good chance of achieving something special.'
Liverpool and Arsenal both dropped two points on the opening day but Manchester United started with a bang - hammering Fulham 5-1 at Old Trafford.
Terry said: 'We were aware of the results the day before and that Man United had done very well before we played and it was important for us to get off to a good start.
'Straight away we have a two-point difference over Liverpool and Arsenal and that could be important.'
The Chelsea captain believes the spirit remains strong at Stamford Bridge after a busy pre-season of comings and goings.
Seven players have left the first-team squad since the end of last season and Khalid Boulahrouz became the sixth summer signing when he completed his move from Hamburg.
Versatile defender Boulahrouz, 24, signed a three-year contract today after passing his medical and agreeing personal terms over the weekend.
The fee is reported to be about £6million and the Holland international is eligible for Europe because he did not play in Hamburg's Champions League qualifier against Osasuna.
Mourinho still wants to add Ashley Cole to his squad list but Terry insists the many changes in personnel will not matter as long as players retain their focus.
Terry said: 'A lot has been written about out team spirit. That has been an important part of our success but equally so has been our focus.
'After two years in which we've had a lot of success, the most important thing now is to stay focused.
'We need to kick off this season with the same concentration on detail, to make the most of every opportunity.'
Terry scored Chelsea's first goal of the new season with a header against City and looked back on an incredible few days.
He was made England captain, scored for his country and then found the net again in his first game of the Premiership season.
Terry, who overcame a groin injury to face City, said: 'It has been one of the best weeks of my life with the armband and the goal. It is probably the best year with my twins being born.'
Boulahrouz claims he has signed for the biggest club in the world.
The Dutchman, who is right-footed and prefers to play in central defence, has been handed the number nine shirt at Stamford Bridge.
Boulahrouz said: 'I am happy to play for Chelsea, the biggest club in the world, and I will try to give my best and play with my heart on the pitch.
'I have played central defender for the last couple of years. That is the position where I can show all my qualities. But right defender is not a problem for me.
'I have not played a lot of games in pre-season but I am fit and I am okay. I know what to do as a defender. That is the most important thing.'
Bouhlarouz earned a reputation as a fearsome tackler in the German leagues and hopes the Premiership referees understand his style.
He watched Manchester City's Italian striker Bernardo Corradi sent off for two bookings at Chelsea yesterday.
Boulahrouz said: 'I played in the Bundesliga and it was a little bit of a problem with the referees.
'I saw the game on Sunday. It was very aggressive and I love the tackling,' Bouhlarouz told Chelsea TV.