EOIN McKeown's early strike helped Colchester United under-23s share the spoils with Coventry City following a 1-1 draw at the JobServe Community Stadium, writes BRIAN WALLER.

McKeown drove a shot into the net at the near post in the ninth minute of the Professional Development League Two encounter, after Ryan Clampin had driven into the area and picked him out.

But Coventry earned a point when Jack Burroughs equalised early in the second half, after converting from Jak Hickman's pass.

After McKeown had given Colchester the lead, Clampin came close to adding a second but his delivery in was straight into the hands of keeper Corey Addai.

At the other end, Reise Allassani's free-kick was fired straight into the arms of U's keeper Ethan Ross while Johnny Ngandu went close with a 25-yard effort that flew just over the bar.

Coventry had a strong appeal for a penalty turned down just before the break after a handball shout, as the U’s went in at the break with a slender lead.

Colchester went close early in the second half through Todd Miller, who attacked down the right but was denied by keeper Corey Addai.

The visitors then went close themselves when Zaine Westbrooke pulled a free-kick wide of the near post.

Coventry eventually got back on level terms nine minutes after the break and almost at once the U’s lost the ball again but from the cross in from the right, the delivery somehow eluded two City players in the centre.

Ross was then kept busy making a save as the ball was crossed in from the right while at the other end, a ball found McKeown moving into the box but he was then well tackled by Morgan Williams.

It had really been Coventry's half and some neat interplay got them in again but Ross was down to make a good save.

McKeown shot wide at the near post before the end, as Colchester had to be content with a share of the spoils.

Colchester United U23: Ross, Akolbire, Forino, Agboola (sub Barnes), Clampin, Miller, Warde (sub triallist), Dunne, Kennedy, McKeown, Charles (sub Sayer). Subs (not used): Coulter, Fouche.