Sebastian Frey says Italian football is suffering from "too many controversies", meaning fans are choosing not to attend matches.
Frey, 32, who left Fiorentina for Genoa in the summer, made his remarks in an interview with Italian website Calciatori.
The French goalkeeper said: "The problem with football in Italy is what revolves around it - there are too many controversies, too many bad episodes both inside and outside the stadiums.
"We also have to think about the economic crisis, which has prevented a lot of fans from watching games on a Sunday."
Frey, who has been playing in Italy for 14 years, said his move to Genoa had been "a lifestyle choice", adding: "My children live in Forte dei Marmi, so I wanted to be near them, but I also came here because I really believe in President Preziosi.
"All the teams I've played for have great meaning to me. With Inter, I played with some great champions. At Verona, I proved that I could play in this League and could grow as a player.
"At Parma, I had the opportunity to work with a great club that maintains stability which is rare in football.
"Fiorentina were fundamental to my breakthrough. I became a good player through my experience in the Champions League with them and the wonderful group of players we had there."