Manchester United chief executive David Gill insists the club can still compete with big-spending neighbours Manchester City despite being overtaken in the pay league.
City's wage bill of £133million has rocketed up £50million in the last year, overtaking United's £131.7million and the Eastlands club, bankrolled by Sheikh Mansour, are closing in fast on Chelsea.
United agreed a bumper new deal with Wayne Rooney last week but are still maintaining their policy of ensuring wages remain less than half their turnover.
Asked if he was concerned that United were now behind Manchester City in the wages league, Gill told Press Association Sport: "No not really - I'm not concerned by that as ever since we have been a public company we have had a policy that wages should be 50% or less of turnover.
"We believe we can do that and still retain and attract the stars we need on the pitch. We think that's the sensible model. Clubs have other models - that's their prerogative. Each to their own."