Confidence the key for Coyle
Bolton manager Owen Coyle believes the Trotters' success so far this season is all down to a summer of confidence building.
Johan Elmander and Kevin Davies scored two each and Lee Chong-yung also netted as Bolton beat Newcastle 5-1 on Saturday to move into the Champions League places.
Kevin Nolan gave away the 18th-minute penalty that began the rout and the flapping Magpies had a solitary strike from England new boy Andy Carroll to show for their efforts. To make matters worse, Fabio Coloccini was sent off late on.
Afterwards Coyle hailed the efforts of his unfancied side and put most of their dramatic improvement this season down to the confidence he has instilled in their ranks since he replaced Gary Megson last January.
Coyle said: "Coming in in January we were second from bottom and their confidence was fragile. We managed to keep ourselves safe with something to spare and the job in the summer was to build up that confidence and belief.
"Every player has bought into what I am trying to do. You can see that togetherness and work rate and intensity and we have the quality to go with it. When you bring that together you have a chance of getting points."
Most of the pre-match talk centred on the return of Nolan and the form of Carroll, and it was Nolan who almost stole the early headlines when he pounced on a first-minute mistake by Paul Robinson to shoot high and wide.
Nolan's miss proved costly and in the 18th minute the former Bolton captain handled an attempted cross by Lee in the box, allowing Davies to open the scoring by sending Magpies keeper Tim Krul the wrong way.
Bolton grabbed their second after 38 minutes when Matt Taylor slammed a long-range free-kick against the bar and Newcastle bungled their attempted clearance, allowing the impressive Lee to fire low past Krul.
"His finish was exquisite," said Coyle. "We need to careful with him because he's played so long without a break, but he's such a talented young player and for me he's going to be a real star in football."
Elmander's first and Bolton's third came in the 50th minute when he coolly dribbled around a stranded Krul, before Carroll fired home less than a minute later to give his side a glimmer of hope.
It was extinguished in the 72nd minute when Elmander brushed aside Coloccini and cut in from the left to fire home, and furthermore three minutes later when Coloccini was rightly red-carded for elbowing the striker.
Davies wrapped up victory with his second penalty in injury time after being fouled by Enrique.