DEANE Smalley's early goal was cancelled out by a late equaliser as Oxford United were held by on their pre-season tour to Scotland by Alloa Athletic.

The visitors went ahead from their first meaningful attack, with Smalley supplying a neat finish.

Alloa quickly hit the woodwork but clear chances were at a premium for the rest of the game.

The U's looked like they had done enough to claim victory, but Eddie Ferns struck in the 90th minute to earn a draw for Paul Hartley's accomplished side.

United began their pre-season games with a 2-1 win at Ardley on Saturday thanks to a late winner from Smalley and he wasted little time in doubling his tally for the summer.

The striker opened the scoring on seven minutes by sweeping Andy Whing's precise pass beyond goalkeeper Scott Bain.

It was a good start, but the advantage was almost wiped out within 60 seconds.

Ex-Hearts striker Andy Kirk thundered in a volley which hit the crossbar and fell to Kevin Cawley, whose tame shot was straight at a relieved Ryan Clarke.

The game quickly settled down and neither goalkeeper was stretched again before the break.

United carried more of an attacking threat, with Dave Kitson again showing some neat touches.

Danny Rose was at the heart of the visitors' best moments. One tackle in his own half set up a three-on-two attack, but when the midfielder played in Smalley the forward's attempted curler was easy for Bain.

Alloa were no pushovers and showed why they had won back-to-back promotions.

The Scottish Division One new boys were assured in possession on their artificial surface at Recreation Park, giving United plenty of chasing to do in the evening sunshine.

The United starting XI were given an hour before changes began to be made.

James Constable and Asa Hall were among the fresh legs introduced and it helped stir the U's.

Midway through the half Rose sent a sweetly-struck volley from 20 yards which swerved just wide.

At the other end Clarke had little to do against an Alloa line-up which was also gradually reinforced from the bench.

One of the substitutes, Darren Young, tried his luck from range with a shot which rose well over.

The game lost much of its rhythm in the final 20 minutes and it looked to be winding down.

But in the final minute of normal time they were undone by a pass from Jason Marr, which saw Ferns sprint through, round Clarke and tap into an empty net.

United continue their pre-season tour with a game at Berwick Rangers on Saturday.

United: Clarke, Hunt (Bevans 60), Raynes, Wright, Newey (Meades 76), Potter, Whing (Davies 60), Rose, Rigg (O'Dowda 76), Kitson (Constable 60), Smalley (Hall 60).

Subs not used: Crocombe, Long, Lee, Lynn, Marsh.

Alloa: Bain, Tiffoney (Doyle ht), Gordon, Marr, Crainey, Robertson (Meechan 63), Simmons, McCord (Young ht), Flannigan, Kirk, Cawley (Ferns 72).

Subs not used: McDowall, Hynd, Forsyth, Smith, McLean, Hardie, Lamont.

Attendance: 245.

Referee: Stephen Finnie.