Olivier Bierhoff claims the standard of Italian football has fallen behind its rivals in the last decade.
The 42-year-old former striker, who is a legend at Udinese and won the Scudetto with Milan in 1999, is now a director within the German Football Federation.
Asked for his thoughts on Serie A, he said: “There is too much tension, a lack of courage in playing youngsters and the disappearance of a generation.
“The teams that dominate are seasoned. The interesting players are ‘too young'. There isn't a half-way.
“In the Bundesliga many teams have a solid group of Germans who bring enthusiasm and ambition. That helps a lot.
“When I come to Italy, even on holiday, I feel a lot of tiredness around Italian football, almost resignation.”
There is a statistical shift too, as from 2012-13 Italy will have only three teams in the Champions League, handing the fourth spot to the Bundesliga.