Fabrice Muamba clambered off the bench to set Bolton on their way to a dramatic 2-1 win over Blackburn at the Reebok Stadium and earned himself the respect of manager Owen Coyle.
The Zaire-born midfielder found himself dropped for the first time in the Barclays Premier League this season but responded by netting the opening goal just seven minutes after replacing Chung-yong Lee.
Despite Mark Davies' sending-off and an 87th-minute equaliser from Mame Biram Diouf, Coyle's men refused to accept a point and were rewarded when Stuart Holden volleyed a stunning winner one minute later.
Coyle said: "Fabrice scored a great goal. It was a big decision for me to leave him out because he has started every game for me. It shows I'm not afraid to make the big decisions.
"It would have been easy for Fabrice to sulk but he didn't. He came on and scored a wonderful goal."