Phil Parkinson saluted Zach Clough's "outstanding" free-kick that set Bolton on the way to a 2-0 League One derby win over Oldham at the Macron Stadium.
Clough doubled his game tally in the second half to see his side move up two places to third and leave their opponents struggling in the relegation zone.
Parkinson said: "You need your big players to produce moments in games and he certainly did that."
The 'Denton Destroyer' broke the deadlock after 10 minutes with a free-kick hotly disputed by Latics boss, Steve Robinson.
"The free-kick was outstanding," added Parkinson. "It was really close to the 18-yard line and sometimes they are difficult to get up and down.
"It was a great piece of skill but that's reward for the hard work he has been putting in in training."
Clough is regularly linked with moves away but Parkinson added: "I've told him ignore anything just concentrate on being a really good player.
"And he has only just started being able to do that because he has had injury problems in pre-season.
"Sometimes things that get fed back to him are only agents' talk. There is no truth in it but it can distract players.
"Zach is a really intelligent lad and he has got to keep his focus in playing well for us. Zach has a lot of work to do to keep fulfilling his potential
"He needs a really good run of games and when he gets that we know we have a special player on our hands."
Parkinson was also pleased with a first home league win since August 20, adding: "I always enjoy winning but the manner of the performance was good.
"But we knew we had to play well because Oldham have a good away record which goes back to last year.
"They had a terrific win at Gillingham last week and you could see there was a spring in their step. Even at 1-0 down they were still a dangerous side."
Oldham manager Robinson praised his side after the defeat but admitted he was unhappy with a number of decision from referee Carl Boyeson.
He said: "There was nothing in the game and I don't know where the referee saw the free-kick from. From then on decision after decision went against us.
"They have a difficult job and I understand that. But it's amazing how many times he gave little decisions for them that swayed the game.
"The boys dug in and showed an unbelievable amount of character, backed by our fans who were terrific.
"We were caught by a referee's decision and then a set play, which was an individual error from Cameron Burgess who is a young boy who has to pick himself up.
"As a collective, they have to be stronger physically and mentally that people don't score goals against them from set plays."
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