Monaco centre-back Andreas Wolf has warned that the trend of clubs – including his own – paying huge fees for players has “reached levels that are no longer normal”.
During the summer, Monaco, newly promoted to Ligue 1 and bankrolled by billionaire Dmitry Rybolovlev, have spent more than €100 million on bringing in Radamel Falcao, James Rodriguez, Jeremy Toulalan and Joao Moutinho.
They have also brought in Ricardo Carvalho, from Real Madrid, and Eric Abidal, from Barcelona, on free transfers.
Wolf, 31, told German newspaper Die Welt: “If somebody has the opportunity to spend such sums, he should do it – but it will become problematic once he runs out of steam.
“That’s why you have to be careful. It is slightly alarming what is happening in European football. I am of the opinion that you have to put a stop to it - it has reached levels that are no longer normal.
“I fear this is heading into the wrong direction and, in the end, football will suffer from it. Structures are sidestepped. I think it sensible to determine how much a club can do or spend, but that ball is in FIFA’s and UEFA’s court.”
New signing Abidal replaces Wolf as the new Monaco captain, but the former Werder Bremen man said he was not unhappy with that decision.
“During the last season, there were some language barriers,” he explained. “I can now fully concentrate on football, and I think it is nice to play alongside such renowned professionals.”