More than a decade ago, before a certain Russian oligarch bought Chelsea Football Club, the players were less heralded and less expensive.
Typical of this era was former Chelsea young player of the year, Samuele dalla Bona, who was sold by Claudio Ranieri in 2002, a year before Roman Abramovich's arrival.
The Italian moved to AC Milan but it has been downhill ever since, and at 33 admits he has effectively retired.
He was last seen playing for Mantova two years ago, and told Italian newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport: "I became depressed and I practically stopped playing."
The Italian went onto say that he wished he never left the Premier League, singling out an incident regarding a Liverpool striker which summed up what he regarded as it's purity.
"Another time, Robbie Fowler dived in the penalty area and he was booed and whistled at by his own fans. I don't know if English football has changed in the past 10 years, but if it's still the way it was, then somebody like Masiello wouldn't have a chance of finding a club."
Dalla Bona was discussing Salvatore Masiello, a player once banned for match fixing in Italy, now playing for Torino.
A spot-fixing probes is currently ongoing in the Football League in England but is not thought to extend to the Premier League.
As for the diving debate, it's ongoing. Former Manchester United defender Gary Neville admitted on SkySports this week that it is becoming more common in England, as the players are simply attempting to match the advantage their European counterparts gain on the continent.
It is still frowned upon however, divers lambasted as cheats by fans, but whether the game nowadays in the Premier League is quite as pure as Dalla Bona recalls is, is up for debate.