Deserves, from the latin merĭtum, is the action which makes a person worthy of a reward or a punishment. Merit is something which justifies recognition (or successful) or which is a failure.
Examples: "Cordoba striker has enough merit to be considered by the coach of the team', 'Buy a luxury car before buying a House is not a merit', 'If you want to send to the Administrative Council, you had to have enough merit that justifies your promotion',"Congratulations, you won the confidence of your colleagues through your own merit."
Can be heard as the result of the good deeds of a person. Merit, in this sense, makes the person worthy of recognition. The talent, effort, career success and solidarity are meritorious questions.
However, have success with others, cheating, lying and selfishness are not considered aspects of merit even when the person in question reaches its objectives through these resources.
Merit is also what gives value to the actions or things. Completing his studies and obtain a professional degree is still something meritorious, but if this person managed to do the same thing while having a job and a family that depends on it, the merit is more important.
In the same vein, a football team devoted champion of a tournament has a lot of merit, although the merit to be highlighted more if it's one of the teams having one of the lowest budgets in the Championship.