Brazil legend Pele has warned that soaring players' salaries and powerful agents who squeeze clubs for higher fees represent ''a danger'' for the future of the game.
The three-time World Cup winner, speaking at a New York Cosmos promotional event in Hong Kong, bemoaned the number of players pocketing big salaries only to "disappear" after a short career.
"Players should never forget to play for the love of the game. Players love whoever pays a little bit more, that's the danger for football," he said. "Sometimes I tease players and say 'you get in one year what I would have to play 10 years to get'.
"Agents do not care if the player is good or not. They want to sell the player and get the money. That's the danger for the future of football."
Pele, considered by many to be the greatest footballer of all time, also raised concerns over the potential impact of goal-line technology currently under discussion at FIFA.
"We need a little bit more time, football is not Formula One or tennis. It is about quick movement. You cannot stop a counter-attack to see if it was a goal," said Pele, who favours the use of an extra referee behind each goal to resolve disputes over penalties and goal-line decisions.