Napoli's Andrea Dossena has stated his belief that Chelsea are one of the strongest teams in Europe after watching his side draw the west Londoners in the last 16 of the Champions League.
The 30-year-old faced the Blues during a two-year spell with Liverpool, and feels that Andre Villas-Boas' men are behind only Spanish giants Real Madrid and Barcelona in the continental hierarchy.
"I played against Chelsea in the quarter-finals for Liverpool. They're the most difficult team after the Spanish sides," Dossena told Uefa.com.
Meanwhile, Alberto Bigon, who coached the Neapolitan side for two years, has stated his belief that the draw has been harsh on the club, but promised fans that the Italian side will show the fight and desire that helped them to qualify for the last 16.
"The draw has already been tough on us," he admitted.
"We came here to take part and see what happens. The tie represents a great challenge that will see us up against one of the superpowers of Europe in recent years.
"We will have to be at our best and are happy because it will be an exceptional tie against a great side and we will face them with great enthusiasm and desire to impress, trying to do again what we did in the group."
The first leg will be played in Italy in February, before the two teams clash at Stamford Bridge for a place in the quarter-finals in March.