The shock arrival at Meadow Park of manager Andy Leese and ten players from Cheshunt FC has left many at their old club devasted.

The defection to Boreham Wood was described by one former colleague as 'a challenge' for the Ryman Premier League side.

Bitter Ambers fans were shocked by the move, which has left them watching a side packed full of reserves.

"They feel they've been betrayed," said player Steve Obeng, who transferred to Boreham Wood this month, only to return to Cheshunt a few days later. "They must be a bit shocked and disappointed. But that's football.

"Everyone was definitely pleased to see me back. It's certainly different now but we've got to get on with it. We need a few players. But it's hard to bring in new players straight away.

"We're using a few reservists at the moment, but they're young and inexperienced. It's definitely a challenge."

Obeng said he agreed to follow Leese to Boreham Wood because so many of his team mates had gone. But, on arrival, he said his heart was not in it after seven seasons with Cheshunt.

Fan and Cheshunt programme editor Jim Tuite agreed the mass exodus was a shock but nothing new, warning that 'what goes around comes around'.

"At the match after they left we were wondering which players were going to turn up - whether they had left or were just late," he said. "We were beaten three nil - pretty respectable given the circumstances.

"It must look pretty bad. It certainly wouldn't happen at Spurs and people must ask about player loyalty? But most players are loyal to the manager before a club "It's nothing which hasn't happened before. This kind of thing happens all the time at this level of football. We've got to get on."

He said he had no bitter feelings towards their former manager, describing him as a "nice guy" who could be expected to do wonders for Boreham Wood.

The arrival of Leese, 41, and the new signings has also created shock waves at Meadow Park, where many well-established stars have found themselves on the bench.

Some, including John Coley, Stuart Lochhead, and on-loan players Tony Henry and Tony Fontenelle have already been released.

He said: "The timing was right and it was what Boreham Wood had to offer. It's got everything right off the field, excellent facilities, a great ground. It has just been underacheiving off the field.

"This is a chance to work for a club with real ambition."

He was also relieved to leave behind some of the problems he said he encountered at Cheshunt to concentrate on football.

- New players turning out at Meadow Park include Leon Archer, 24, who began his career at Spurs and Leyton Orient before moving to Potters Bar Town.

Michael Black, 28, is a former England schoolboy international who has spent time with Arsenal and Millwall. His brother is Crystal Palace star Tommy Black Phil Turner, 24, another former Cheshunt player joining Boreham Wood, also spent some of his early career at Millwall before moving onto St Albans City and Potter Bar Town.

Jon Meakes joins the side as Assistant Manager. The former Hertford Town player/coach moved to Cheshubt at the start of the 2002/03 season along with Andy Leese.

Other signings include former Spurs striker Chris Bangura, 28; 23-year-old defender James Dickie; former Stevenage Borough defender Andy Keepence, 27; Defender Sam Ledger, 24, and attacking midfielder STeve Wales, who both have been playing for Andy Leese since their days at Somersett Ambury FC; and wing-forward Chris Watters, 23, who played a big part in Cheshunt's promotion from Ryman Division One North last season.