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View From The Town End: Everton (Capital One Cup)

It's a break from the Championship grind tonight as Premier League Everton visit the Mad Stad for a League Cup tie. So what can we expect from Roberto Martinez's side?

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Calvin from our SB Nation sister site Royal Blue Mersey gives us the lowdown on our next opponents, Everton.

How would you sum up Everton's season so far?

Not bad. The schedule-makers did us no favours as we're facing the Premier League's top eight clubs from last season in the first ten games of the current season. We have nine points in six games and have played decently enough. There is still room for improvement though as manager Roberto Martinez is still trying to work out how to utilize some of squad depth.

After last season's poor showing resulting in an eleventh place finish, we should only go up from there.

How has Roberto Martinez treated this competition during his time at Goodison?

Very nonchalantly I'm afraid. It's been exactly twenty years since the Toffees have had to unlock the silverware cabinet. With the kind of out of control finances we see being sunk into the Premier League, there's no way we'll be lifting that title any time soon, which leaves our best bets as the Capital One and FA Cups. However, Martinez has insisted on sticking with playing weaker squads late into the competitions, resulting in the Blues getting knocked out cheaply.
With no European competition to distract him this year, we're really hoping that Roberto makes it a point to focus more on both tournaments.

Any fond or not so fond memories of games between the sides?

Not fond, I'm afraid! Reading coming to Goodison and knocking us out of the FA Cup in the Fifth Round in the 2010-11 season really sticks in the craw. The Blues were struggling in the Premier League too at the time, but getting knocked out by the Royals rejuvenated the side and we went on to finish in 7th place, just four points behind Merseyside rivals Liverpool.

It is strange though that for two teams with such rich histories, the clubs have only played each other ten times.

Who should Reading be particularly wary of on Tuesday?

Romelu Lukaku is due a good game for us. He's particularly fond of central defenders who give him space to turn and impose himself physically, so if you have a couple of those watch out. We're expecting Roberto to name an attacking lineup so if you see Gerard Deulofeu starting then that's another one to watch out for. The Barcelona youth academy product loves to dribble and is getting pretty good with getting to the right byline and fizzing low crosses into the six-yard box.

Any Reading player you're not looking forward to facing?

I was going to say Adam LeFondre, but I just noticed that he's not on your squad anymore! He gave our defence fits the last couple of times we faced you lot in the Premier League.

I'm afraid I don't know too many players on the Royals squad currently. Michael Hector and Lucas Piazon are on loan from Chelsea, but are they playing yet? Looks like Orlando Sa and Nick Blackman have had no trouble finding the net lately, so it's welcome to see that Sa's suspended.

Score prediction?

Everton have shown a propensity to concede first, especially when playing away in competitions. I'm expecting to see the home crowd out in full force roaring the boys on, so Reading to score in the first half hour before the Blues can finally establish themselves and nick a 2-1 win in the second half.

Thanks again to Calvin and you can follow the Royal Blue Mersey guys over @rbmersey.