This season marks 40 years since the Black Cats last won the competition, while they reached the quarterfinals under the Northern Irishman last time out.
And O'Neill has revealed his intentions to go as far as he can in this year's competition, while he also hopes it can provide a boost to his side's confidence.
"Last season we got through to the quarterfinals, which was the furthest the club has been in the competition for some time," O'Neill told the club's official website. "We certainly want to emulate that, so whatever side we put out tomorrow we want to compete. This is a competition we want to do well in.
"A win in the cup can give your season a bit of momentum. It's a good boost to the confidence."
However, O'Neill is wary of the threat posed by a steely Bolton side, although his team will be boosted by the fact that they have won their last three trips to the Reebok Stadium.
O'Neill added: "Bolton are a good side. They were relegated at the very end of the season and didn't stop fighting.
"Tomorrow they have got very little to lose, they can play with freedom and we've got to go there and be on guard against that."