Following Everton's dominant 3-0 away victory against Swansea City, there remain few willing to question the club's development into arguably one of the most exciting in the entire English Premier League.
In fact, after five games, the Merseysiders are sitting 3rd in the league table and should maintain their position with a batch of winnable games coming up before they host city rivals Liverpool on October 28th.
Against the Swans, who have been compared to Barcelona due to their fluid attacking style, David Moyes' men played lively, exhilarating football and combined all over the pitch to collect their second away victory in three attempts this campaign.
The return of Steven Pienaar, along with the arrivals of stylish attackers Kevin Mirallas and Steven Naismith, who have all slotted into the first-team with ease, has provided the Toffees with an edge that has been missing in previous squads since the club last failed to qualify for Europe in 2010.
In fact, it is so atypical for Everton to start a season this brightly that many commentators are discussing possible Champion's League football if the club can maintain their form until January—when they usually begin their surge up the table.
In their previous two matches against Newcastle and Swansea, the team has managed 18 and 31 shots, respectively. Unparalleled for a club know for it's defensive-prowess under Moyes, the emergence of Marouane Fellaini in the "Tim Cahill role" behind the striker has flourished alongside the always spectacular partnership of Leighton Baines and Pienaar on the left-side of the pitch.
This has resulted in more work for opposing goalkeepers and defenders, who will soon need to deal with the threat of returning striker Nikica Jelavic and the composed distribution of Darron Gibson, both having missed the build-up to tonight's match against Leed's United in the League Cup with injuries.
Everton's third round tie against the Championship club provides a perfect opportunity to make a statement in a winnable competition for Moyes' players. It should also allow a chance for Victor Anichebe—scorer of three goals in four matches this season—and others on the fringes to build confidence for the league match against Southampton on Saturday.
The last time these clubs faced each other was in April 2004, when they played out a 1-1 draw in Leed's last campaign in the top-flight. Since then, Leeds has descended to the third tier and slowly started to march themselves back to prominence in the Championship.
Nevertheless, the Toffees should prove too much for Neil Warnock's men and come away with a comfortable victory at Elland Road.
Fixtures for the Fourth Round of England's second domestic cup competition should be announced after matches conclude on Wednesday.
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