Glyn Hodges could not resist a broad smile as he assessed a compelling performance by his Blues Reserves as Everton were routed 4-1 at City of Manchester Stadium.
Hodges' bright young men responded superbly to the big-stage setting and looked a cut above traditionally tough opponents who fielded several players with senior experience.
Not only did in-form striker David Ball weigh in with an opener and a closer, but both full-backs Javan Vidal and converted forward Greg Cunningham also scored impressive goals.
City could even afford the luxury of a missed penalty as their passing and movement dominated the game. "Yeah, total football," smiled coach Hodges. "I'm pleased with them.
"We played well - we scored four goals and maybe could have had more. Everybody contributed. You always want to keep a clean sheet and score as many as possible, but it was a good performance.
"It's nice for the boys to play in the stadium, it gives them a lift and an opportunity to play well, and they gave a performance. The pitch is fantastic and there are other benefits like the Prozone stats."
Alex Nimely's game deserved a goal but he hit a late spot kick too close to the goalkeeper.
Hodges said: "Bally is looking strong and quick. He's normally the penalty taker so he could have had a hat-trick. He missed out there!
"They are good players who work hard in training. We try to emulate the first team in a lot of the drills we do and the tempo of our play - there's the chance to step up with the first team."