QPR youngster Michael Petrasso delighted to earn first Canada cap

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The 20-year-old winger made his full debut for Benito Floro's side in Friday's 1-1 friendly draw with Azerbaijan.

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Queens Park Rangers winger Michael Petrasso has told MLSSoccer.com of his delight at earning his first senior cap for the Canadian national team.

The 20-year-old former Toronto FC prospect made his debut for the Canucks in Friday’s 1-1 friendly draw with Azerbaijan in Austria, showing some promising flashes during his 61-minute run-out before going off for QPR teammate Junior Hoilett.

He had previously been called up twice by head coach Benito Floro over the past year, making the 35-man provisional roster for last summer’s Gold Cup and the squad for the two-legged World Cup qualifier against Belize in August, and the promising wide man is now aiming to establish himself as a regular fixture in the team going forward.

"I’m delighted to get my first cap for the men’s team,” Petrasso told MLSSoccer.com. “I’ve been in the Canadian program since I was 14, 15, so making my way all the way up to the senior team is what the kids dream of when they start.

“The pitch was small, so I didn’t get much space, but I got in a couple of good crosses and did my job defensively, so hopefully the coach could see that.”

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Petrasso originally joined QPR in 2012 and spending two years in Toronto’s academy and went on to make his senior debut for the London club at the end of the 2013-14 campaign.

The pacey wide man, who has also enjoyed loan spells at Coventry City, Leyton Orient and Notts County, failed to feature for the Hoops during the following season but has since made somewhat of a breakthrough at Loftus Road, earning three starts in eight Championship appearances this past term.

Whether he is ready for a bigger role in the side next season is ultimately up to manager Jimmy-Floyd Hasselbaink to decide, but the Toronto native believes he has made big strides forward in his development over the past 12 months.

“Being around [the first team] all year, training every day, it’s really helped me improve,” Petrasso told MLSSoccer.com. “The Championship’s competitive, and I’ve got to keep working hard to earn a starting spot with the QPR squad.”

QPR's Michael Petrasso and Burnley's Tom Heaton

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