Race for the titles in Devon Football League
- Credit: Matt Smart
We are halfway through an intriguing season in the Scott Richards Solicitors Devon Football League North & East Division, and it could not be tighter at the top.
Exwick Villa entered the Christmas break as league leaders, but only on goal difference from the University of Exeter, and the students do have a game in hand.
Although they are eight points behind the top two, Braunton will start 2022 with a hope that an impeccable run could see the North Devon outfit enter the title race.
The next chasing group are separated by just one point, with Alphington, Budleigh Salterton and the tight defence of Topsham Town all fighting hard for supremacy. Topsham do also have the advantage of games in hand.
Feniton are seventh and have made a strong start to life at this level. It is then a scrap between the likes of Newtown, Liverton United, North Molton Sports Club and Exmouth Town Reserves.
While Clyst Valley are five points adrift at the bottom, just converting some of the battling draws into wins could transform their season.
The story in the South & West Division is not quite so tight but leaders Teignmouth will still have to maintain their excellent form to protect the current four-point lead over an impressive Mount Gould, who are unbeaten so far and have a game in hand.
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Lakeside Athletic and Plymstock United are only separated by goal difference and lead the chasing pack, with the mid-table section looking incredibly close.
Bere Alston United, Plympton Athletic and Paignton Saints are the teams in the middle, but this does not tell the full story, as Bere Alston have a number of games in hand.
The youngsters from Plymouth Argyle Development have fared well over the first half of the season and hold a four-point advantage over ninth-place Buckland Athletic Reserves.
Local rivals Ipplepen Athletic and Newton Abbot Spurs Reserves occupy places 10 and 11, while the English Riviera duo of Stoke Gabriel & Torbay Police Reserves and Watcombe Wanderers have both shown enough promise to pull away from the bottom places.