AC Milan legend Paolo Maldini has admitted Italian clubs are struggling to compete for European trophies due to a lack of financial investment.
Maldini's comments come on the back of Juventus' embarrassing 4-0 loss against German champions Bayern Munich in the Champions League quarter-finals.
No Italian side has progressed past the Champions League quarter-final stage since Jose Mourinho's Inter Milan side lifted the prestigious trophy in 2010.
Maldini, speaking to Forza Football, said on the predicament: "You have to invest money to compete with the great teams in Europe. There is no other way to reach that kind of level.
"You could see it with Juventus against Bayern. Juventus are a great team, especially in Italy, but when you compete with a team like Bayern, you can see the difference. They need at least two or three more great players."
Maldini, who retired from professional football in 2009, won the Champions League on five different occasions during his 24-year spell at the San Siro.
The 44-year-old has ruled himself out of being the man to reform Italian football due to spending large parts of the year in America.
His former side are currently trailing Serie A leaders Juventus by 15 points and are four points behind second-placed Napoli.