EVERTON sauntered into the third round of the Carling Cup with a classy 5-1 victory over Huddersfield Town at Goodison Park.
A Toffees line-up which included two debutants, in goalkeeper Jan Mucha and winger Magaye Gueye, had comfortably enough to ease past Lee Clark’s spirited League One outfit.
As predicted David Moyes made several changes from the team which drew against Wolves in the Premier League on Saturday, and his shake-up yielded early benefit when new-boy Gueye delivered an inch-perfect cross for Marouane Fellaini to head home after just seven minutes.
The early goal gave Everton the lift they needed after a subdued start to their league campaign, and they dominated possession despite a scare when Jan Mucha was forced to make a diving save from a thumping Jamie McCombe header.
Any chances of an upset seemed remote when Jack Rodwell doubled the home side’s league seven minutes later.
The hotly-tipped future England star drilled a low shot past Alex Smithies after beating his marker with ease to start Evertonians anticipating a rout.
It wasn’t to be quite that easy however. Huddersfield struck back with five minutes of the half left, when Lee Peltier’s close range effort hit the bar and John Heitinga turned the ball into his own net under pressure from Theo Robinson.
But the second half saw the Blues quickly restore their convincing lead, when Jack Rodwell was upended in the penalty area and Jermaine Beckford coolly converted the spot-kick for his first Everton goal.
Seamus Coleman and Magaye Gueye went on to justify their starts; each causing the Yorkshire side’s back four to sweat, and Jack Rodwell signalled a serious challenge to David Moyes’ first choice midfield with some effortlessly classy footwork.
Former Everton left back Gary Naysmith, joined by fellow ex Blue Peter Clarke in the red and black stripes of the opposition, was warmly applauded as he was replaced on 67 minutes.
But there was no such charity from the boys in blue who continued to push for a fourth. Jermaine Beckford thought he had scored again when he bundled over from close range after a scramble, but referee Neil Swarbrick decided substitute keeper Ian Bennett had been fouled.
But Coleman’s probing became more and more bothersome for Huddersfield, and former Liverpool academy player Lee Peltier ran out of ways to stop the young Irishman and hauled him down instead after yet another teasing run. Determined to allow their team-mate to score in the right end, Everton’s forward players allowed John Heitinga to take the kick but he will have to carry on waiting after his shot was well saved.
Undeterred the Blues made it four thanks to a delightful move initiated by Osman.
The midfielder slipped a smart pas into the area which Beckford laid off to Louis Saha, and the Frenchman caressed the ball past Bennett with his first touch of the game. And they wrapped things up nicely when Seamus Coleman turned provider with a wonderful cross which Osman neatly headed home in the dying stages.
The young Irishman will certainly give Moyes pause for thought ahead of Sunday’s league clash with Aston Villa after a typical all-action display. And supporters can continue to dream of their first trophy since 1995 after an impressive display to re-ignite their optimism.