Everton 4 Leeds United 0

Last updated : 27 October 2003 By Kevin Markey

Steve Watson scored a remarkable hat-trick and former Scotland striker Duncan Ferguson added to Leeds’ deficencies.

The Whites problems are increasing, as are those of Brazilian World Cup winner Roque Junior. The defender was on the receiving end of a 4-0 hammering on his debut against Leicester, sent off against Birmingham and now ridiculed on Merseyside.

Leeds supporters must be wondering whether this is the real Roque Junior or a fake with a similar name, while manager Peter Reid was a miserable figure after the game. This time last season his Sunderland team were destroyed by Arsenal leading to his departure from Wearside.

It is was a case of deja-vu and Reid will have to take drastic action to effect a change in fortunes.

Everton even had Wayne Rooney on the bench but still had the firepower to crush Leeds. Ferguson came in for his first league start of the season, and James McFadden made the most of his first full Premiership match with a great display of wing wizardry.

Leeds had skipper Dominic Matteo back, but their defence was a sham, as Roque Junior was again subjected to a terrifying examination.

Ferguson was clearly involved to test the frailty of Leeds in the air, particularly after the aerial bombardment Leicester gave the Brazilian a couple of weeks back.

The chances flowed from the off as Everton powered forward. Gravesen saw a shot flash across goal,Tomasz Radzinski had a header ruled out for offside before Ferguson’s touch on a Watson cross went inches wide of a post.

Roque Junior’s initial introduction to Ferguson resulted in the big Scot dragging the Brazilian’s shirt virtually off his back at a corner. Referee Paul Durkin issued the Scot with a severe warning, and the defender suffered continued humiliations from then on.

McFadden went past three men in the box soon after before angling a shot past a post.

Leeds amazingly held out until the 26th minute, but then Radzinski harassed Roque Junior into a dreadful error as he tried to hook clear, and the ball dropped for Watson to play a clever one-two with Ferguson before lashing the ball into the roof of the net.

On 37 minutes McFadden’s long ball put Radzinski away again. Paul Robinson raced from his area to kick clear, but only as far as Watson who superbly lobbed home into an empty net from 35- yards.

Two minutes later it was three. Tony Hibbert’s right-wing cross was met by an unmarked Ferguson, who headed home from six yards. His first headed goal in five years. Roque Junior and his central defensive partner Zoumana Camara were again nowhere to be seen.

At half-time Reid could have taken anyone off but it was Seth Johnson, Jermaine Pennant and Lamine Sakho, who were replaced by Michael Bridges, Salomen Olembe and Aaron Lennon. Still there was no respite as Everton almost scored from the re-start, Watson battling to retain possession in the box before forcing Robinson into a brilliant point-blank save.

But his hat-trick was not long coming and came in the 52nd minute. First there was another McFadden run, then David Unsworth’s cross which flicked off Roque Junior’s head, and finally Watson beyond the far post to chest down and lob over Robinson into his far corner.

Watson was taken off with 15 minutes to go and replaced by Rooney, who missed when clean through on goal in injury time.

Oh and Nigel Martyn had his easiest game in years.

Everton: Martyn, Hibbert, Yobo, Stubbs, Unsworth, Watson (Rooney 76), Gravesen, Carsley, McFadden (Linderoth 86), Radzinski (Kilbane 76), Ferguson.

Subs Not Used: Weir, Turner.

Leeds: Robinson, Kelly, Camara, Roque Junior, Matteo, Pennant (Bridges h/t), Morris, Seth Johnson (Lennon h/t), Sakho (Olembe h/t), Smith, Viduka.

Subs Not Used: Harte, Carson.

Attendance: 39,151

Referee: P Durkin (Dorset).