George Friend believes Boro's rest over the international break was well-deserved and good preparation for the hectic April Sky Bet Championship schedule.

Boro signed off for the break with a win over promotion rivals Hull and Friend admits that the squad would've liked to bounce back into another game, but also believes the respite was much needed.

"When you win a game like that you want another coming quickly but then the weekend comes and your body is a bit sore," said the defender.

"You look at the fixtures we've got coming up and you think that the break was well-deserved and good preparation for this busy period.

"We've got eight games coming up in a month which is ridiculous so it was good to have a bit of a break, then fly into those games and pick up points.

"There is no reason why we can't get back into the automatics and clinch promotion in that month."

League football resumes for Boro on Friday night, when Aitor Karanka's side will make the trip to former Premier League side Queens Park Rangers (7.45pm) for a televised game.

It was Boro who came out on top when the two sides last met in November. QPR are now under new management with Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, but Friend believes the pressure will be on the home side to attack on Friday.

"QPR have picked up recently," he said. "Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink had a tough start but he's a good manager and they've bought into his way.

"They're starting to get results but it's quite a tight pitch to go to and I think it will suit us to get on top of them there and the pressure is on them because they're at home.

"We can go and win there for sure and it's a Friday night on TV so it's a good one for us."

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