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Trotters boss reveals that his midfielder's recovery from a cardiac arrest has given his players a huge lift as they battle to avoid relegation to the Championship

Bolton Wanderers manager Owen Coyle has revealed that his squad are using stricken team-mate Fabrice Muamba as their inspiration to survive the drop this season.

Since the 24-year-old's cardiac arrest in March, Bolton have picked up maximum points from their three Premier League matches to move a point clear of the drop zone and Coyle says that positive news on Muamba's recovery has given his players a boost.

"It has given the players an incredible lift knowing their friend is getting better," said the Wanderers boss.

"You can only do your best in the circumstances but knowing everybody was willing Fabrice to get better helped no end."

The former England Under-21 international has been walking around the London Chest Hospital and was recently pictured sitting up in his bed smiling.

While it is uncertain if Muamba will play professional football again, Coyle is hopeful that the midfielder will make a full recovery.

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"My hope is he comes back to have a great family life. Anything else will be a bonus," he added.

"With his improvement there’s always hope but we don’t get too far ahead of ourselves.

"Everyone in the game knows who’s a decent guy and who’s not.

"Fabrice is such a gem of a lad. And that’s why that support was there round the world. The players here know that.

"And they want to stay in the Premier League for a number of reasons, and yes Fabrice is one of them."

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