Everton are notoriously slow starters, sure they usually end the season with a flourish, but imagine what they could do with a winning start?
After two successive wins over Manchester United and Aston Villa not to mention a 5-0 win over Leyton Orient in the League Cup, it was unsurprising to see expectations rapidly rise.
After Newcastle's close shave with securing a Champions League spot last season, Everton fans were already dreaming of replicating the challenge.
A 2-0 loss to West Brom at the weekend will bring Everton back down to earth. Steve Clarke's side have had an excellent start to the season too and leapfrogged the Toffees in the table by courtesy of their win.
Saturday was just one of those games where nothing went right for Everton, Darron Gibson was taken off injured after 20 minutes, and the side were forced into a re-shuffle.
The Irishman has been described as the club's 'unsung hero' regarding their start to the season. Was it merely a coincidence that without him they slipped to a defeat?
The 24-year-old was excellent against his former club Manchester United in the season's opener, providing the assist from the corner for Marouane Fellaini's winning header.
While Fellaini took the plaudits for the victory, and deservedly so he was magnificent, Gibson's contribution to the match as a whole went largely unnoticed.
He played 70 minutes against Aston Villa in the club's 3-1 win, completing 90 per cent of his passes along the way, playing in a central midfield role alongside Leon Osman which allowed Fellaini a role as a support striker.
Everton will hope his injury is not serious; the international break has come at a good time and he has withdrawn from the squad, although citing the disappointment of missing out on Euro 2012 rather than a fitness issue.
It is not even 12 months since the midfielder left Manchester United, and he will still feel as though he has a point to prove. He is not even halfway to doing so, but playing a big part in leading Everton to a respectable league finish will show he is on the right path.
Credit to West Brom for Saturday's win, they had a well executed tactical gameplan to deal with Fellaini and it worked, and their own midfield of Mulumbu and Yacoub were excellent as they have been in every game so far this season.
But for Everton the loss highlighted just how important Darron Gibson has become to them, and he will hope to be back fit for their important next game, a Monday Night Football home game against Newcastle two weeks today.
Win that and perhaps they can start thinking of bettering Newcastle's season from last year again.
Everton fans what do you think of Gibson's progression since joining the club?
image: © Ben Sutherland