Schut relishing Downs role
Johannesburg - Mamelodi Sundowns' defender Alje Schut says he left his native Holland and came to South Africa in search of adventure, and believes he has settled in well at his new club.
Schut left the Netherlands earlier this year, having spent 12 years playing for FC Utrecht, a club in the highest Dutch league, the Eredivisie.
"I was at Utrecht for 12 years. I'm quite a loyal guy, but in the back of my mind I was always looking for adventure," Schut said on Tuesday.
"This is a big adventure.
"I really like the South Africans, so far, because they are very welcoming and I think they are very joyful people."
Schut said that while he was looking for a change of scenery when he decided to leave Utrecht, his move to Sundowns came as a bit of a surprise.
"I made my mind up last year that I wanted to go for an adventure," Schut said.
"I was negotiating with Toronto FC [a Major League Soccer club in Canada] and with Melbourne [a soccer club in Australia].
"So, I was already negotiating with clubs that are really far away. Then, all of a sudden, my agent said that Neeskens was looking for a central defender with a lot of experience.
"I never thought of South Africa before, but I did my research and I thought why not?"
The Dutchman has been well used by Neeskens thus far this season, starting the last four consecutive Premiership fixtures, while also making his cup debut in Sundowns' 1-0 first round Telkom Knockout victory over the University of Pretoria last week.
"In European football there is a slow build-up, the players look for the spaces and then they go.
"Here, the players go all the time. Everyone wants to go, go, go.
"Even the defenders want to attack, but it's a very physical league and also a very technical league.
"The only thing that is lacking is a little bit of technical knowledge but it's developing very fast."