Carlton midfielder Elijah Hollands has shared an insight into the stress of informing Blues bosses about his drug faux pas in the off-season.

Hollands, who penned a one-year deal at IKON Park after requesting a move from the Gold Coast, was suspended for the first two rounds of the 2024 season after being caught with an illicit substance at a casino last September.

The 21-year-old, desiring to join forces with emerging brother Ollie at Carlton, revealed his then-concern that his Blues move might not eventuate because of his mistake.

"To be honest it was pretty stressful because the main stress for me was figuring out if it (the deal) was going to get done," Hollands explained, via

Gold Coast SUNS' Elijah Hollands in action during the Round 21 match against Hawthorn. (Photo by Dylan Burns/AFL Photos)

"What happened (with the illicit substance) wasn't ideal and I had to acknowledge it with the footy club first, with both sides, and explain what happened.

"So we chatted through that and the club's been great at wrapping its arms around me since I came in.

"I fronted up and explained [the situation] to them. There were a lot of nerves whether they were still going to go through with it or not. They were some of the things I had to acknowledge and take responsibility for."

After initially weighing a three-year deal, the Blues reportedly shortened their offer to a single-year commitment after details of Hollands' indiscretion were revealed.

"At the end of the day I wanted to get here and that (a reduced contract) was part of the deal," Hollands continued. "I was obviously going to accept that and now that I am here I am hopefully able to show some of my strengths and then work towards having a long career here.

"[Senior coach Michael Voss] was great. I spoke to him a few times through that period and he was upfront and honest [about] his opinions and thoughts, which I respected.

"And once I got to the footy club he acknowledged it was a fresh start for me and that's the way they were going to keep it, and that's stayed true.

Hollands is relishing in a familiar forward-midfield mix after struggling in a wing role during the later stages of his Gold Coast tenure.

"I feel like I'm training well," said Hollands of his first Blues pre-season. "I've been able to make some good relationships on-field and getting back to that natural position has allowed me to put me in a spot where I can show my stuff."

Carlton faces Geelong and Melbourne in its pair of pre-season hitouts before travelling to Brisbane to play the Lions in the AFL's inaugural Opening Round on March 8.