Gary Ablett has praised the leaders he's had around him at Gold Coast, admitting he "probably wasn't ready" for the captaincy early on at the Suns.
Ablett was entrusted with the captaincy at the Suns from day one, and said if he was "completely honest" he wasn't right for the first couple of years.
"I feel like I've really grown a lot as a leader and person, and a lot of that goes back to everyone that's involved in the football club, especially the players that supported me being captain for five or six years," he said.
"If I was to be completely honest, I probably wasn't ready for that, my first couple of years. But those boys got behind me and really supported me.
He said any criticism of his leadership hasn't fazed him, though.
"It's not something, to be honest with you, I read too much into," he said.
"Every now and then, you might have a friend or a family member call up and they seem more upset than you are, 'how can this person write this?' It's something you learn to deal with.
"At the end of the day, you've got to remember it's just people's opinions. The people close to me know the work that I put into my football and the dedication that I show, and to me that's all that really matters.
He also praised the leaders currently around him at the club.
"I think those boys have been fantastic, the whole leadership group," he said.
"Those guys have been fantastic. They're the type of guys that are able to galvanise a group, get the boys up, make sure that we're giving our all each week.
"We've still got a lot to work on, but as most of the people have said tonight, I believe the group is heading in the right direction, the club is heading in the right direction. We've got the right people around and success isn't too far away."