Medals are meant to reflect base strength, and are influenced 1. strength and number of towers/obstacles, 2. strength of waves, 3. success against previous attackers.
Though, if somebody temporarily removed part of his defenses (and thus aspect 3 got lowered dramatically), the medal rewards might be lower even when the base is back at full strength.
Also, medal rewards are influenced by trophy levels and differences between attacker and defender.
And, when you e.g. remove some barricadedes from a well-constructed, maxed out base, it will show like 32 medals only despite still being deadly for anyone except very high lvl players.
Moreover, elite boosts seem to not affect the medal rating at all, at least not directly, only slowly over time through aspect 3. So when for example a player with a base that has no boosts at all suddenly joins no. 1 alliance and thus has tons of boosts, his medal rating will at the moment stay unaffected.
Etc etc… so, the medal count is on average roughly representative of the base strength, but you can’t really actually rely on the medals only for judging its difficulty.
Trophies are meant to be representative of a player’s overall strength - base strength and raiding strength/success. Usually/on average, higher lvl players are stronger and thus higher on trophies, but e.g. a lvl 80 player might easily be 1000 trophies above a lvl 90 player if he has a better base or the trophies of one of them were “manipulated” (see below).
Some players willingly lose with like 0% on other players in order to either lower their own trophies (for meeting easier opponents, or for tricking weaker players into attacking their base) or increase the attacked player’s trophies (e.g. to push him up to top100 / top10). Also, players might “open” their base (remove most of their defenses) for lowering their own trophies (as everyone can now easily attack and defeat them). And of course, at higher levels of the game, the easiest way to lose like 1000 trophies within a single day, is to just leave your alliance for a day, losing all boosts, as countless people will then attack your comparably easy base.
The trophies you then GAIN by beating some particular base, depends mostly on the trophy count of attacker and defender, and not on the base strength.
Etc etc… so, the trophy count is on average roughly representative of a player’s strength, but you can’t really actually rely on the player’s trophy count for judging its difficulty, and the offered trophy gain for beating a base is mostly independent of the actual base strength.
I hope this answer clears things up a bit more!