City have since spent £350million on players - with wages to match - but Kompany says the only pieces of silver his team-mates are interested in come wrapped in ribbons.
"I don't know one player who has dollar signs or pound signs in his eyes when he is on the pitch," said Kompany.
"Money plays an important part in any team's success, and United and Chelsea - even Blackburn back in the day - only won the league because they spent a lot of money. Who can say what a footballer is worth?
"Whether a player is worth £50million or nothing is down to what a club is prepared to pay. That sets the value.
"But money can't help you once you go on to the training ground or into a stadium.
"We just want to be the best we can, individually and collectively, because if you aren't a team then you will never win anything.
"There is a real soul about this club, a great work ethic, and if people want us to fail, so what?
"We are in the elite now. I don't feel any bitterness or anger towards these people because they are not important. The only people who can judge us are our fans.
"For me, City are a bigger club than Chelsea and Blackburn so I can't see why we shouldn't be successful."