Alje Schut during the Telkom Knockout match between University of Pretoria at Loftus Stadium© Muzi Ntombela - BackpagePixAuthor: John AliuOver the years, Mamelodi Sundowns Football Club has been blessed with foreign players who have etched their names on the corridors of Chloorkop. Players such as Argentine Vicente Principiano, Chilean Jorge Acuña, and most recently Uruguayan Gastón Sirino and Brazilian Ricardo Nascimento, just to mention a few, are some of the players who have come from beyond the continent to ply their trade with Masandawana.One legend that graced the field for Bafana Ba Style with elegance and zest is Dutch national Alje Schut, who joined the club in 2012 from Dutch Eredivisie club FC Utrecht.
The Mamelodi Sundowns Digital Magazine Crew linked up with the former Downs Skipper.
Schut Celebrating as Champions during the 2013/14 ABSA Premiership League Win© Sydney Mahlangu - BackpagePixThe hard-tackling defender expressed his delight, “Wow, it is so good to hear from the club after such a long time! I still have many good memories of the team, its supporters and everyone associated with the Mamelodi Sundowns brand. Before I joined the club, I had an option to go to Canada, but my agent insisted we must go to South Africa for a week and the rest was history. I still recall game days, dressing room fun, the stadium atmosphere and so much more.”
Whilst at Chloorkop, the towering central defender was a positive influence as he stood out in the heart of defence; impressing with his aerial strength, ball-playing skills, confidence and leadership abilities. Schut was the Captain when Mamelodi Sundowns famously won the League Championship in the 2013/14 season after a seven-year drought.

The left-footed defensive dynamo spoke of how the winning mentality of the club was reinforced, “During my time at Sundowns, we played for the club, the badge, the supporters and our families. At first, it was not that easy because we had to fight for the results; but when the victories started to roll in, the belief also came and that produced a winning mentality that was second to none.”

The Sundowns legend further highlighted the reason for making the switch to The Brazilians, “Winning trophies was one of the key objectives that I had when I moved to Chloorkop and I am happy that I played a huge part in the team’s success stories. Since I left, the team has continued to dominate and I am loving the current coaching set-up of Manqoba Mngqithi, Rulani Mokwena and Steve Komphela.”
The Sundowns Skipper challenged by Bernard Parker of Kaizer Chiefs© Samuel Shivambu - BackpagePixDuring his time with The Brazilians, Schut played 67 league games, scoring nine goals in the process. The left-footed central defender also enjoyed a stellar send-off when he helped Sundowns clinch the 2015 Nedbank Cup in what was his last season with the Chloorkop-based club.

The Dutch national spoke fondly about some of his favorite teammates, “I played with a lot of talented players at the club. If I were to choose a seven-a-side, I would have Teko Modise, Bongani Zungu, Surprise Moriri, Themba Zwane, Esrom Nyandoro and Percy Tau. However, it would be hard for me to choose a goalkeeper because I played with several top shot-stoppers such as Kennedy Mweene, Wayne Sandilands, Calvin Marlin and Dennis Onyango. They gave us a different dimension whenever they played.”

After leaving Sundowns, Schut returned back to his native homeland where he signed for Kozakken Boys, a team that competes in the third tier of Dutch football. The defender eventually retired from the game in 2016. Presently, he is working as a Chief Scout for FC Utrecht.
After three memorable years at Sundowns, Schut will always be fondly remembered as the Skipper who brought back the League glory to the Yellow Nation. His selflessness, sacrifice and ability to command from the back has placed him on the list of legendary Mamelodi Sundowns Captains.
Alje Schut during the Absa Premiership 2014/15 match between Mamelodi Sundowns and Supersport United© Muzi Ntombela - BackpagePix