Merit Title Shared

ARGYLE and Forest Green Rovers have ended the Merit League 2 season as joint-winners of the title after finishing the campaign with the same points and same goal difference.

The game between the two sides ended in a 2-2 draw and the EFL have decided to share the title between the two clubs, which is a terrific achievement for both clubs after a thrilling end.

Argyle entered the final game knowing they needed a big win over Newport to close the goal-difference gap. An incredible 9-1 win for the Pilgrims piled the pressure on Rovers, who responded the next day with 7-3 triumph over Leyton Orient to leave us locked together at the top.

“I’ve been really pleased with the Merit League campaign because we had a tough start to the season in terms of results,” said Academy Director Kevin Hodges. “We had to juggle teams around, which does have an impact on performances and results.

“During the Merit League campaign, we’ve been a little more consistent with team selection and that has enabled us to build some momentum. The players played with confidence and managed to demonstrate the performances needed to win games.

“We had a very young side for the Bristol Rovers game and, although we were evenly matched with them, it was unfortunate to lose that game because we could have won the Merit League outright.

“However, to go into the Newport game knowing we needed a big win and then perform really well on the main pitch at Home Park was a great achievement. A 9-1 win was a record for me but Forest Green came back with their win, which made it a strange end to the season.

“It is very rare circumstances but, for ourselves and Forest Green, we still won the title. It’s always nice for young players to say they have achieved something and enjoyed some success during their apprenticeship.”

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