Everton boss David Moyes believes his side have had near-perfect preparation heading into Saturday's FA Cup showdown with Liverpool.
The Toffees have made a habit of improving in the second half of campaigns in recent years and this season is no different, with the club losing just four games in all competitions since the turn of the year.
Such form has seen them inch above their neighbours Liverpool in the Premier league table and progress through to the FA Cup semi-finals, where the Reds stand between them and a 14th appearance in a FA Cup final.
Moyes admits his side's good form has given them the perfect platform to plot victory over their city rivals, though he insists the Toffees still go into the game as underdogs.
"We couldn't be going into the semi-final in any better form as we are in as good a condition as we possibly could be," Moyes said.
"We have played really well, we have shown lots of good things and great character in what we have done and have got a bit of momentum.
"I think teams who have lots of quality and good footballers often need a great heart and desire.
"You need all those elements to be a great side and win big games and at this present time we are getting all the qualities I hope you would from Everton, but we are playing well just now.
"The players have a feeling they are doing the right things; we are scoring goals, which we weren't at the start of the season, so we have to keep that momentum going.
"We know we go into the game not as favourites as Liverpool have beaten us twice this year so we have to put that in perspective. We are probably underdogs even though we are in fine form at this time.
"We feel good about ourselves but we are up against a side we know are as good as anyone on their day. They have won some really big games, but we have as well."
One statistic that may puncture Everton optimism is their poor recent record against Liverpool.
The blue half of Merseyside has only come out on top in these local tussles four times in the last 12 years - losing both of this season's encounters.
Their record in FA Cup semi-finals is even worse, with Everton winning only one of the four meetings at this stage of the competition - and that was the first back in 1906.
Despite the burden of history Moyes insists he has enough big-game players in his squad to cope with the pressure of the occasion and carry his side through to the final.
"I think we have the experience. Hopefully most of the boys nowadays have been to Wembley as a player or in another capacity," he added.
"I don't think being above Liverpool in the league gives us a psychological advantage. We are just in the mind-set that it is a game of football.
"It is something I am sure we can deal with and go there and play as well as we have done - that is all we can ask.
"I have talked a lot about how the new players who have come in (in January) have made the difference, but the players already here have stepped up to the mark and they are in good form now.
"There are very few players who are not playing well and I want them to continue doing it and if they do we will make it as tough a game as possible for Liverpool."