Schalke president Clemens Tonnies says Max Meyer and Leon Goretzka's decisions to leave the club were motivated by money.
The German side are challenging for second place in the Bundesliga this season, but are set to lose two prized assets in the summer.
But Schalke's president believes the departure of the Germany internationals is a sign of the times in world football, with everyone following the money instead of showing loyalty to clubs.
"The money train has overtaken emotions," he told Sky Sport. "Those who stay at a club forever - there are not many anymore.
While Schalke are losing Goretzka, 23, and Meyer, 22, despite their strong season, fellow Bundesliga side Cologne are set to keep two of their own in Jonas Hector and Timo Horn, despite their relegation.
"I think it is positively remarkable and good that Horn and Hector extended their contracts at Cologne," Tonnies said. "This was a different matter to Leon Goretzka and Max Meyer.
"[In Meyer's case] the agents were involved intensively, which is a pity, but we must continue to play football."
Tonnies' words strike a different tone to those of sporting director Christian Heidel when Meyer's exit was confirmed, who promised a friendly split.
"There were – and there won't be – any bad words from both sides; it's all been very amicable," he said.
Although Goretzka's future has been decided, Meyer is yet to reveal where he will end up next term.
Liverpool and Arsenal have both been linked to the midfielder, who has made almost 200 appearances for Schalke's senior team.