Aitor Karanka spoke to the media on Thursday ahead of this weekend's Premier League match against Crystal Palace.

Here's what the Head Coach had to say.

On Crystal Palace this weekend:

"It is the biggest game because it is the next one.

"It's big because it is a direct important, but one thing is clear - we have more games and we are competing every single game.

"The team is improving and is confident, which is the main thing.

"I don't need to add pressure because my players know it is an important game - I need to transmit my confidence in them."

On the race for Premier League survival, and Boro's record against surrounding teams in the table:

"We've played games against the top ten of the table and had chances to win.

"Now, when we have the chance to play teams in our position I am confident.

"We stay in games until the last minute - against Man City we scored, and against Tottenham we had a great chance. We want to do the same against Crystal Palace.

"It is going to be difficult because they are an experienced team with a very experienced manager - but on the pitch we are 11 against 11 and we will go there to win.

"They not in a good situation but they have good players - maybe we can take advantage but we have to be at our best."

On Adama Traore: 

"He's learning a lot - his decisions are improving and he's passing more.

"Adama's young and he wants to learn, and when he's next to me it's easier. 
"I was showing him one video before the [Oxford] game - to score goals he needs to arrive in the box and the first time he did, Rudy [Gestede] scored.

"The more he can improve, the better for our team."

On injuries:

"Antonio Barragan is out, and we are not 100% with George Friend and Calum Chambers - they are not training with the team so we need to check.

"We are working well and we have alternatives so I am calm - I don't think it will be a problem."