Retiring Carlton veteran Andrew Carrazzo says there’s no quick fix to the Blues’ problems but he feels the right people are in place for long-term success.
The former vice-captain told his teammates on Tuesday that Saturday’s AFL match against Hawthorn at the MCG would be his last after 193 games.
The 31-year-old, who won the John Nicholls Medal as the club’s best and fairest in 2007, played during an era when the club had limited success.
But he felt that was all that was missing.
“I really do rest my head knowing that I really couldn’t have given anything more to the club and to my footy,” Carrazzo said.
“The team success is something that’s missing from the resume but I look as that as a thing of timing and circumstance.
“I still got to play some finals footy and I cherish the memory of those games.”
Carrazzo, who plans to work in his electrical business and spend more time with his wife Yvette and three-year-old triplet girls, said the second-last Blues still had some tough times ahead.
“I’m a realist and we’ve got some hard yards ahead of us but I think we’re starting to put the pillars in place to get back to being a great club.
“It’s obvious to everyone that the club has to rebuild and has to do that by going through the draft.
“It’s a big job but I’m confident we’ve got the people here to do it.”
He said players also needed to show more leadership to help steer the club back to success.
Carrazzo thanked interim coach John Barker for helping him enjoy the last half of his final season, as well as sacked coach Mick Malthouse, who Barker replaced.
Carlton head of football Andrew McKay said the club had been privileged to have Carrazzo in their ranks.
“Andrew is one of those players you know would bleed blue,” McKay said.
“He put his heart and soul into everything he did at this football club.”
*ANDREW CARRAZZO’S CAREER AT A GLANCE
Born: December 15, 1983
Draft: #5 pick for Geelong in 2002 rookie draft, #2 pick for Carlton in 2004 rookie draft
Junior clubs: East Burwood/Oakleigh Chargers
AFL Debut: Round 21, 2004 v Melbourne
Career Brownlow Medal votes: 19
Guernsey number: 44
John Nicholls Medal winner 2007
Pre-season Premiership Player 2005 & 2007
Best Clubman 2008
Carlton Life Member, awarded 2011
Leadership group 2008-2014
Carlton vice-captain 2013-2014