The £50m Spanish striker ended a 25-game run without a goal on Sunday when he scored twice in a man-of-the-match display in the FA Cup quarter-final against Leicester City at Stamford Bridge.
Those strikes took his Chelsea tally to seven goals in 55 appearances for club and country since swapping Anfield for Stamford Bridge last January – but Hughes is now expecting to see the 28-year-old embark on a scoring run.
“It’s been difficult for the boy,” said Hughes. “There’s huge expectation on him [and] it hasn’t quite worked out for him.
“But every striker will tell you, you’ve just got to get your name on the score-sheet. If you do that, it becomes easier.
“Confidence is such a huge thing for strikers. Obviously he’s come through a period where he’s really struggled to hit the back of the net.
“Maybe this is a catalyst for a better period for him. He seems to be trying to do the right things. I’ve watched a lot of his games, and he’s been working hard in those games without getting the run of the ball. So maybe things are starting to change for him.
“I was a bit ‘streaky’ myself. I would go through spells of four or five games without a goal, and then I’d score in four or five games.
“I was never prolific, and would never score every other game like some players would. But you’re always glad when a run [without a goal] – however short – comes to an end, and you’re up and running again. So he’ll certainly feel that way I’m sure.”
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