LUKE Freeman believes the international break came at the perfect time for QPR.
After a tough start to the campaign, Rangers turned a corner with two wins and a draw in all competitions ahead of the free weekend.
“We all know we are far from the finished article and we’ve got work to do - that’s what we have been doing over the last week,” Freeman told www.qpr.co.uk.
“We feel a lot better for it and we certainly feel we are going to Bolton this weekend in the right frame of mind.”
Steve McClaren has stated the gap in fixtures prior to Saturday’s trip to Bolton would be used to bed-in a new style of play which would get the best out of strikers Nakhi Wells and Tomer Hemed, who joined on loan last month.
Geoff Cameron, who spent the last six years in the Premier League with Stoke City, was also added to the ranks, and Freeman explained: “It was a good time for a break because it has given the new boys a chance to get to know everybody and see how we work as a club.
“It has been really productive and we all feel like it has put us in a good position to build on the recent results we have had.”
The R’s suffered four defeats from their first four league fixtures. Freeman says that spell was tough to take – but it enabled the players to learn a lot about each other.
“It was a bit of a wake-up call, it makes you realise how close the division is as well,” he said.
“You look at [our defeat at] Preston. That game was decided by a looping header which wasn’t even a shot – it was a cross which has gone in, really.
“Against Sheffield United we were 1-0 up, they equalise with an offside goal and then win it with a really-debatable penalty. Had those things gone in our favour we could have been going to West Brom with four points instead of none, and your mind-set is completely different.
“That’s all in the past now but it shows you how tight things are in the Championship.
“It has certainly been character-building for us as a group. It shows you when the chips are down who is willing to stand up and be counted for – and I thought everyone showed they’ve got that about them, which is just brilliant for team spirit.
“It’s massively important and it’s good to know we have that side to us when times are tough.”
Freeman himself was the subject of transfer speculation during the summer but the former Bristol City man is focused on his football and doing as well as he can for the R’s.
“It’s good to get the recognition but I just want to concentrate on letting my football do the talking,” he said.
“What’s most important is how QPR are doing and what direction we are heading in as a team. We are all working hard to get a run going and to get some more wins on the board. That’s the most-important thing.
“We are really looking forward to Bolton on Saturday. We will do our homework on them and head up there in confident mood.”