Conor Gallagher, Nicolas Jackson and Enzo Fernandez struck for the Blues at Villa Park to defeat the hosts on FA Cup 4th-round replays. Chelsea were booed off at the weekend after a 4-2 loss against Wolves followed by a 4-1 thrashing at Liverpool a week ago.
Chelsea had to respond in some sort of way and they did it with a huge win over Aston Villa in the ongoing FA Cup. It was Gallagher who smashed home from close range for his first goal of the season. Jackson hasn't been clinical in front of the goal but was deadly with a downward header from Malo Gusto's cross to double his side's lead.
Villa were unbeaten in 17 home Premier League games until Newcastle won at Villa Park a week ago and now Chelsea ripped them apart in the FA Cup. The tie was over before the hour mark as Enzo Fernandez scored a sensational free kick to make it 3-0.
Fernandez celebrated in style after curling past his international teammate Emi Martinez into the top corner. Pochettino's side will now face second-tier Leeds in the fifth round. Villa got a consolation goal in stoppage time when Moussa Diaby fired in off the post, but it was too late for the home side.
"I think (it) was one of the best or maybe the best performance of the season," said Pochettino. "It arrived at a very good moment for us. We have a young team. It's about being solid and consistent and it is the most difficult thing in a young team," he added.
Meanwhile, Nottingham Forest also qualified for the 5th round and will face Manchester United in the last 16 but needed penalties to beat Bristol City of the Championship. Divock Origi fired Forest into an early lead, but Jason Knight quickly leveled for the visitors.
Bristol City then missed lots of chances to win the game before extra time and paid the price as Sam Bell was the only man to fail to score in the shootout and Forest clinched a 5-3 victory at home.