Richmond captain Trent Cotchin has opened up about the criticism his leadership has been receiving from sections of the football media.

That criticism intensified after the Tigers failed to hold on to a 17-point lead late in the final term of last Friday night’s clash with Collingwood at the MCG, despite the fact Cotchin had 38 disposals in the match and was awarded AFL Coaches Association votes by both Damien Hardwick and Nathan Buckley.

“Given the streams of social media and so forth now, it is in your face non-stop, whether it’s Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, any paper . . . all the radio stations are talking about it,” Cotchin told Tiger great Matthew Richardson on the Club’s new weekly preview podcast.

“But the reality is for me, as an individual, you need to ignore it, otherwise it does bog you down.  And in some ways, people would think that you’d start to question yourself.

“The reality is the No.1 opinions that matter for me are my teammates and coaches, and the people that I love and care about most, which is my family and friends.”

Richmond coach Damien Hardwick went in to bat for Cotchin during his press conference at the Club on Thursday morning, labelling the criticism “unjust and farcical”.

“That’s the first time I’ve heard ‘Dimma’ talking about it (publicly), so it’s fantastic support from the coach . . . They’re the conversations we have behind closed doors, and they’re the people you care most about,” Cotchin said.

The Tigers’ skipper expected his side to be stretched again, like it was against Collingwood, throughout the season, as this year “it’s anyone’s game, bottom versus top”.

“It will happen throughout the year a number of times, whether that will be the last four minutes of a game, or when we’re behind and we need to win a game,” Cotchin said.

“It’s always good to have little lessons along the way, as long as they don’t damage you too much on the back-end of (the season), which we’re hoping isn’t the case, which is why we need to win this game of footy (against Adelaide) on Saturday.”