SOME OF THE YESTERYEAR MAMELODI SUNDOWNS CAPTAINS 
WHO LIFTED 
THE ELUSIVE CHAMPIONSHIP TROPHY
In a historic feat, Mamelodi Sundowns clinched their seventh consecutive DStv Premiership title with a resounding 5-1 victory over Kaizer Chiefs at FNB Stadium. This remarkable achievement marks their 14th title in the PSL era, solidifying their reign as one of South Africa's footballing powerhouses. From the 1997–98 season to the most recent triumph in 2023–24, Sundowns has consistently risen to the occasion, cementing their status as the best Club in the country. Behind every successful campaign, great captains have steered the Sundowns squads to the pinnacle of South African football, leading with determination, willpower, and unwavering dedication to the Club and its vision.Leading the charge this time is the illustrious Themba 'Mshishi' Zwane, whose captaincy has been instrumental in Sundowns' unprecedented success.
A leader on and off the pitch. Yet, as we celebrate this latest victory with six games still to be played, it is essential to reflect on the influential leaders who have steered Sundowns' journey to greatness. These are the generals on the pitch whose legacy continues to shape the rich history of the Club. From the legendary clinical marksman, Daniel Mbulaheni 'Mambush' Mudau to the ever-reliable threat neutralizer, Michael Manzini and the enigmatic Dutchman, Alje Schut, we look back at the Captains who led Sundowns to the first 7 PSL titles, setting the trajectory for this unprecedented dominance.
Daniel Mbulaheni Mudau:
Captain of Sundowns' Reign - 1997–98, 1998–99, 1999–2000

Daniel Mbulaheni Mudau, fondly known as 'Mambush', is a man who needs no introduction to the Masandawana faithful- A Great servant of the Club who gave his all on the pitch. Born on 4 September 1968 in Mamelodi, his journey with the Club began in 1992, shaping a career that spanned over a decade until 2003. Transitioning from his former club Ratanang Maholosiane, Mudau found his true calling at Sundowns. Leading from the front, he captained Sundowns to an era of unprecedented success, clinching the Premier Soccer League (PSL) title thrice consecutively from 1997–98 to 1999–2000.

Mudau's prowess as a goal-scorer has solidified his place as the third-highest scorer in the history of the Premier Soccer League (PSL), with an impressive total of 110 goals. He stands behind only South African legend, Siyabonga Nomvethe and current Masandawana netfinder, Peter Shalulile in this prestigious ranking. Additionally, Mudau holds the distinction of being Sundowns' all-time top scorer across all competitions, boasting an impressive record of 155 goals in 351 appearances for the Club. However, his impact transcended mere goal-scoring statistics; Mudau embodied leadership, inspiring his teammates with his love for the Club and passion for the game. As he continues to serve as a Club ambassador, Mudau's legacy remains ever-present, ensuring that his influence on Sundowns' success endures through generations.
Michael Manzini: 
Leading Sundowns' Reign - 2005–06 and 2006–07

When discussing the elite defenders to emerge from South Africa, Michael Manzini's name unquestionably belongs among the pantheon of defensive greats in the country's football history. A loyal son to Masandawana whose blood runs yellow. An ever-reliable defender and inspiring captain. Born on November 29, 1972, in Hoedspruit, Limpopo, Manzini's journey with Sundowns began in 1995 at the tender age of 20. Over the next 14 years, he showcased exceptional dedication, making well over 250 appearances for the Club. Manzini's ability to anticipate opponents' moves and execute precise tackles was second to none. He was a master of reading the game, ensuring Sundowns' backline remained solid and impenetrable. As a loyal servant to the Club, Manzini played a pivotal role in Sundowns' triumphs, including their historic three consecutive PSL titles under the captaincy of Mambush. Following a period of near misses and almosts for the Club, Manzini took on the captain's armband and led Sundowns to two consecutive titles in 2005–06 and 2006–07, solidifying his legacy as one of the Club's greatest leaders. After his retirement in 2009, Manzini transitioned seamlessly into a coaching role, continuing to contribute to the Club's success. His commitment to excellence extended beyond the pitch as he pursued further qualifications, obtaining a CAF license to further enrich his coaching career. Manzini's legacy as a Sundowns legend is not only defined by his on-field achievements but also by his enduring dedication to the Club's success and his lasting impact on South African football.
Alje Schut: 
Captaincy Reign - 2013/2014

Born in Utrecht, Alje Schut kicked off his football journey with his hometown club, FC Utrecht. Spending an impressive thirteen seasons with FC Utrecht, Schut became the longest-serving player of any club in the Eredivisie by August 2011. Captaining his Utrecht side in his final season, Schut's leadership qualities were evident even before his move to Mamelodi Sundowns.

Schut's arrival in December 2012 signaled a turning point for the club, which had last won the championship in 2007. Tasked with providing defensive leadership, Schut's impact extended beyond the pitch. After being named captain Schut's leadership helped stabilize the team and secure a league title in 2014. His down-to-earth demeanour and unwavering commitment endeared him to fans and journalists alike. In addition to his defensive role, Schut also proved to be a scoring threat, netting nine goals in 67 PSL matches. After departing, Schut left a lasting impression on Sundowns and its supporters. His tenure marked the beginning of a successful era for the Club. Retiring from professional football in 2015, Schut returned to the Netherlands to pursue his passion for education, aiming to become a primary school teacher and continuing to make a positive impact beyond the football field.
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