Luis Figo says "nobody is indispensable" amid heavy speculation that his compatriot Cristiano Ronaldo could leave Real Madrid.
Ronaldo is yet to comment on his future after claims he wishes to leave Santiago Bernabeu emerged last week.
Those reports were prompted by accusations - which the player denies - that he defrauded Spanish tax authorities out of EUR14.7million.
Former club Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain have been linked with a swoop for the 32-year-old.
Madrid president Florentino Perez stressed this week his side had no plans to sell the prized asset, but Figo insists no player or executive is bigger than the club when it comes to the Liga and European champions giants.
"I hold the opinion that nobody is indispensable, not just Cristiano Ronaldo," Figo said to Gol when asked about the Portugal forward's future.
"Clubs can't depend on anybody. The history of these clubs is above everyone, even the president or whoever."
Despite insisting Madrid could cope without Ronaldo, Figo does not believe the 2016 Ballon d'Or winner, who is hot favourite to win the 2017 award too, will ultimately leave.
He continued: "A lot of things would have to happen for him to leave.
"It is a personal decision and if a person really wants something to happen then it will end up happening, but I see it as unlikely."
Ronaldo is with Portugal at the Confederations Cup and scored the winning goal in Wednesday's 1-0 victory over hosts Russia in Moscow.
He refused to answer questions on his club future after winning the man of the match award, instead giving a pre-prepared statement talking only about Portugal's triumph.
That came after Ronaldo also skipped his media duties as man of the match following Portugal's 2-2 opening-match draw with Mexico, claiming he needed to undergo treatment on a knock instead.