Chelsea are within sight of the FA Cup fifth round after Oscar’s stunning 30-yard free-kick at Stamford Bridge.
The Brazilian superbly swept the ball over the Stoke wall and into the far corner of the net on 27 minutes.
Oscar and Andre Schurrle have since hit the woodwork.
Chelsea were well on top before the opener and Samuel Eto’o almost put them ahead in only the third minute.
Eto’o, a surprise choice ahead of Demba Ba, turned cleverly and sent a low shot inches wide of the post.
At the other end, Peter Crouch headed wide after holding off David Luiz to meet Jon Walters’ left-wing cross.
Chelsea kept pressing after going ahead – an unmarked Branislav Ivanovic could not quite jump high enough to get his head to a free-kick from Frank Lampard, who was then just unable to connect with Eden Hazard’s cross.
And moments after Stephen Ireland almost equalised on the counter-attack, shooting into the side netting from nine yards out, Oscar fired against the post.
The outstanding Oscar continued to turn on the style after the break, running at the heart of the Potters defence and picking out Schurrle, whose shot struck the angle of post and bar.
Oscar then shot wide following a lovely passing move.
Chelsea: Schwarzer; Ivanovic, Luiz, Cahill, Cole; Matic, Lampard; Schurrle, Oscar, Hazard; Eto’o.
Subs: Cech, Azpilicueta, Terry, Mikel, Ramires, Willian, Ba.