Everton's UEFA Champions League hopes are in their own hands after a 3-0 win over top-four rivals Arsenal at Goodison Park on Sunday.
First-half strikes from Steven Naismith and Romelu Lukaku, along with an own goal from Mikel Arteta, put the hosts on course for a first appearance in Europe's premier club competition since 2005-06, when they failed to make it past the qualifying rounds.
After winning six Premier League matches in a row, Everton are now a solitary point behind fourth-placed Arsenal with a game in hand and have a great chance to secure European football in their first season under Roberto Martinez.
Naismith gave Everton a great start when he opened the scoring after 14 minutes - tucking the ball home after Wojciech Szczesny had done well to deny Lukaku.
Lukaku, a threat to Arsenal's backline for much of the game, doubled the lead when he cut in from the right before evading the attentions of Nacho Monreal and Thomas Vermaelen.
The Belgian then fired past Szczesny, who was again left helpless thanks to more feeble Arsenal defending, before Everton old-boy Arteta put through his own net in the second half under pressure from Kevin Mirallas.
Arsene Wenger's men must reflect on another damaging defeat, which extends their winless run in the top flight to four matches, and face an uphill task to secure a 17th successive season in the Champions League.
In a lively opening, Leon Osman went close after two minutes with a dipping effort that sailed marginally wide of Szczesny's left-hand post, while Lukas Podolski's shot veered just off target at the other end.
Osman was then forced off after suffering a cut to the head when challenging Bacary Sagna, with Ross Barkley introduced in his place, but the switch did not harm Everton as Naismith pounced on a loose ball to find the net.
Lukaku had brought a smart save from Szczesny but Naismith kept cool to slide home the rebound as Everton were rewarded for their positive start.
Arsenal went in search of an equaliser but were kept at bay by an Everton side who looked threatening on the break and assured at the back.
The hosts moved further clear when Lukaku produced a stunning solo effort to register his 13th league goal of the season just after the half-hour mark.
It was no more than Everton deserved as they put themselves in control at the break before starting the second half brightly.
Aside from a moment of madness that saw Mirallas lose possession to Olivier Giroud inside his own area, the hosts looked comfortable in protecting their lead.
Mirallas then played a key role in Everton's third, setting a counter-attack in motion and releasing Naismith. The Scot was denied by Szczesny but Arteta turned the ball home under pressure from Mirallas.
Aaron Ramsey made his first appearance since December 26 as a substitute for Arsenal, having been out with a thigh injury, but the Welshman's return only proved a minor consolation for Wenger on an otherwise gloomy day, which ended with Yaya Sanogo having a goal ruled out for offside.
|Coach: Roberto Martínez|
for L. Osman 10'
for S. Naismith 81'
for R. Lukaku 86'
|Mashaba wants lessons to be learnt after AFCON exit|
|Mourinho refuses to wade into Costa incidents after Chelsea win|
|Football League Review: Bent double sends Derby second, Rotherham triumph|
|Chelsea 1 Liverpool 0 (aet, agg 2-1): Ivanovic settles action-packed League Cup semi-final|
|Milan 0 Lazio 1: Inzaghi future plunged into further doubt|
|Neymar dreaming of ending Brazil´s home hoodoo|
|South Africa 1 Ghana 2: Late Ayew winner seals qualification|
|Senegal 0 Algeria 2: Mahrez and Bentaleb dump Senegal out|
|Bocchetti poised to join Milan on loan|
|De Rossi suffers calf injury|
|Montano accuses Oldham of double standards after Evans saga|
|Bojan out for the season with ruptured cruciate|
|Cameroon v Ivory Coast: Renard defends Yaya Toure|
|Yanga-Mbiwa makes Roma move permanent|
|Guinea v Mali: Quarter-final berth on offer in Mongomo|
|Thohir: Inter not reliant on European football|
|Bremen land Vestergaard|
|Allegri refuses to rule out Cassano move|
|Mexes handed four-game ban after Lazio dismissal|
|Joyce reveals Valdes´ inspirational team-talk|
|CAF announces AFCON venue switches|
|Alcacer commits future to Valencia|
|Postecoglou calls for Aussie ´energy´|
|Everton confirm Eto´o departure to Sampdoria|
|Pochettino to stick with Vorm despite cup error|
|Barcelona are not favourites against Atletico, says Luis Enrique|
|Allegri wary of Parma backlash in Coppa Italia|
|Zidane urges Real to tie Ancelotti down|
|FIFPro: Transfer system failing football|
|Anderlecht condemn Standard´s Defour banner|
|Australia 2 UAE 0: Socceroos ease into home final|
|Barca overhaul youth system|
|FIFPro demands clubs respect contractual obligations|
|Mahmoud targeting World Cup place with Iraq|
|Fabregas wants Chelsea to show winning mentality|
|Rangers borrow £10m from Ashley´s Sports Direct|
|Lyon face anxious wait over Lacazette|
|Undermanned Lazio recall Perea|
|Ki wants South Korea to prove their superiority|
|Ghana´s Gyan wary of South Africa|
|Mashaba urges South Africa to attack|
|Benitez: Napoli deserved to win|
|Pacos de Ferreira 1 Benfica 0: Leaders fail from the spot|
|Serie A Review: Higuain at the double in controversial Napoli win, Udinese see off Empoli|
|I´m glad Rochdale haven´t made the news - Hughes|
|Getafe 2 Celta Vigo 1: Hosts come from behind for first win in 10|
|Real hit back at media reports over transfer dealings|
|Rochdale 1 Stoke City 4: Joy and angst for Bojan as Premier League side progress|
|Turkish Super Lig Review: Kuyt at the double in Fenerbahce win, Besiktas back on track|
|Senegal v Algeria: Morale is high, insists Gourcuff|
|Cassano leaves beleaguered Parma|
|Copa del Rey Preview: Atleti look to overturn Barca advantage, Espanyol wary|
|Atletico Madrid v Barcelona: Griezmann targets second-leg fightback|
|Sheffield United v Tottenham: Clough expects fired-up Spurs for second leg|
|Cape Verde 0 Zambia 0: Stalemate sends both sides out|
|Democratic Republic of Congo 1 Tunisia 1: Both teams qualify for quarter-finals|
|FA Cup fifth round: Middlesbrough handed Arsenal test|
|South Africa v Ghana: Must-win game for Mashaba´s men|
|Parma v Juventus: Serie A leaders strong favourites to reach semi-finals|
|Van Praag planning to stand for FIFA presidency|
|Inter snap up Brozovic|
|Van Persie unsure of long-term United future|
|Broken metatarsal rules El Shaarawy out for at least six weeks|
|FIFA: No disciplinary proceedings against Real|
|No Plan B if Guardiola goes - Rummenigge|
|Millwall take Hooiveld on loan|
|Chile v United States: Klinsmann has high hopes for young stars|
|Carver to lead Newcastle until end of season|
|Shenaishil taking positives from last-four exit|
|Neymar happy with life at Barca and Messi relationship|
|Lucas Silva ready for life at Real|
|Milan ´always with Inzaghi´ - Menez|
|Rodriguez living the dream at Real|
|Stielike expecting Australia in final|
|Mourinho not dwelling on Bradford defeat|
|Schweinsteiger under no pressure to extend Bayern contract|
|Herd heads to Wigan on loan|
|Inter defensive duo suffer hamstring tears|
|UAE coach Ali eyes Asian Cup final|
|Gattuso dreaming of managing Rangers|
|Fiorentina agree return of Gilardino on loan|
|Sakho hits back at critics|
|South Korea 2 Iraq 0: Kim books sixth Asian Cup final place|
|Sturridge could return against Chelsea|
|Zinnbauer backs Drobny as Hamburg first choice|
|Drogba targeting Chelsea stay|
|Postecoglou confident Australia squad can progress|
|UEFA does not have the courage to run against me - Blatter|
|Foster: Anichebe unplayable|
|Australia v UAE: Japan´s absence a boon for Asian Cup hosts|
|Milan v Lazio: Injury-hit visitors aiming for back-to-back wins|
|Trezeguet confirms retirement|
|No ´major problems´ with Nicolas Frey´s head wound|
|Strootman injury not "serious" - Garcia|
|No Paraguay, USA for retiring Riquelme|
|Saint-Etienne did not try to play football - Blanc|
|Primeira Liga Review: Sporting move within one point of Porto|
|La Liga Review: Parejo downs Sevilla, Resino starts with a point|
|Serie A Review: Juve go seven points clear as Roma draw again|