Everton boss Roberto Martinez was full of praise for his side after their excellent 2-1 first leg win over Man City - but warned his players that there is still plenty of work to do if they are to reach the Capital One Cup final.
Goals from Ramiro Funes Mori and Romelu Lukaku either side of a Jesus Navas strike gives the Toffees the edge, but they still face a tough challenge at the Etihad Stadium in three week's time.
It was a much improved display than in recent games, particularly defensively, while the Goodison crowd also responded to create a much more feisty atmosphere than of late.
The only downside from the evening was injuries to Tom Cleverley, Seamus Coleman and goalscorer Lukaku, who will almost certainly miss the FA Cup third round tie against Dagenham and Redbridge this weekend.
Speaking shortly after the final whistle Martinez said:
"Goodison Park was rocking The character we showed was incredible. We had to cope with losing Tom Cleverly and Lukaku got a knock and we finished with 10 men. The reaction after conceding was excellent.
"It means nothing. It is the first leg we had to win and now we prepare for a very interesting second leg.
"The first goal was a terrific delivery from the corner and we reacted quicker to the second ball. The goal was coming, we had a strong period.
"For spells we played with real confidence. The stats are there to back any assessment of Lukaku, from our point of view he has always been the perfect striker for our football club. He is a young boy, he wants to be the best in the world."