Perhaps the biggest impact that today's victory will have is not the three points - although they are crucial given recent games - but the way it could galvanise the side and generate much needed momentum ahead of the final stretch of the season.
It was pleasing for Roberto Mancini that after plenty of criticism over his training methods - much of it media led of course - that he was vindicated by his game plan being executed to perfection. As anticipated, he went with a tight three in midfield with Pablo Zabaleta partnering Gareth Barry and the restored Nigel de Jong. This allowed Vincent Kompany to resume his partnership with Joleon Lescott at the back.
The important selection though was that of Carlos Tevez. Only arriving back in the country on Friday, he was thrust straight into the side given the absence of Emmanuel Adebayor, flanked by Craig Bellamy and Adam Johnson. His performance today highlighted exactly what we have been lacking the past few games, and it is no coincidence that his absence coincided with a poor return of results.
The game plan was clear. Get men behind the ball, deny Chelsea opportunities and try to catch them on the break. Although we stymied Chelsea early - restricting them to long range efforts - our ball retention was not good enough, thus preventing us from attacking with any purpose. Tevez and Bellamy saw little of the ball whilst Johnson struggled to create.
We were then undone by a neat pass from Cole, which allowed Lampard to slot home. Vincent Kompany may have been guilty of allowing his man to drift by though. At that point, the winless and goalless run at Stamford Bridge looked certain to be extended but on the stroke of half time we were handed a lifeline as a poor back header from Mikel allowed Tevez to get the better of both Terry and Carvalho and somehow scuff his shot passed the aptly named Hilario to put us level at the break.
From then on we asserted control. Far from sitting back content with a draw, we began to open up the game. Bellamy more advanced and Wright-Phillips offering a different option than Johnson. Gareth Barry also played his most impressive attacking display for some time.
It was Bellamy's pace that put us ahead. Taking on Mikel, he cut inside and hit a controlled shot past Hilario to the almost disbelief of the crowd. From then on the game was all but complete. Chelsea looking ragged and ill-disciplined, we visibly grew in confidence and both the third and fourth goals testament to this. Mancini's gameplan had worked to perfection and despite a late penalty by Lampard the points - and headlines - were secured.
A first goal in eight games at Stamford Bridge, first win since 1983 and the first double over them since 1957. The weight of history was against us. But history is there to be re-written.
The effect of the victory cannot be overstated enough. A victory such as this is worth so much more than a mere three points. The confidence boost this will provide is something that can be taken forward and can provide justification for Mancini's tactics - often criticised but poorly executed rather than poorly thought out of late. He now has Tevez and Bellamy - so crucial to the counter attacking approach - back in unison and hopefully ready to shoulder the responsibility that they so thrive on.
With eleven games remaining we sit in fourth place. Much has been of us having the most difficult run in of the teams chasing fourth spot, but what is in our favour is that we have to play those sides around us.The side showed a great unity and spirit today and aligned with the quality we possess, have a real shot of achieving fourth spot.