Sun, sea -- and no tax – Is this the most glamorous location for a professional footballer?
Porto duo – Monaco's spending spree began with the recent signing of Joao Moutinho (left) and James Rodriguez from Porto for $90 million. Pictured holding the Portuguese league title after Porto's 2013 triumph, former Monaco chief executive Tor-Kristian Karlsen describes the duo as "two of the best midfielders in European football."
Falcao coup – But more players were to come, notably Colombian striker Radamel Falcao, who joined from Atletico Madrid. Arguably the best striker in the world, Falcao helped Atletico win the Spanish Cup earlier this month. However by joining the French club, Colombian Falcao will forgo the chance to play in next season's Champions League.
Buying experience – To help provide experience in their defence, Monaco have signed the 35-year-old Ricardo Carvalho on a one-year contract with the option of a further year after his deal with Real Madrid expired. "I am delighted to join Monaco and participate in this new adventure. It is a new challenge for me," said Carvalho, who played in the Porto team that beat Monaco 3-0 in the Champions League final in 2004.
Mister Ranieri – Monaco is the 14th club Italian coach Claudio Ranieri has managed. As well as Italy and France, Ranieri has also coached in Span and England.
French football pyramid – Last summer Monaco spent $6.4 million on Delvin N'Dinga, who is pictured here chesting down the ball, in buying the Congolese international from Auxerre. Former Monaco chief executive Tor Kristian Karlsen questioned whether Monaco's tax dispute with the French football authorities might prompt the club to stop buying players from Ligue 1 clubs.
Committed Russian owner – Monaco's owner is Russian billionaire Dimitri Rybolovlev, who is the world's 100th-richest man according to Forbes magazine. His fortune comes from Russia's largest producer of potassium fertilizer Uralkali.
Stade Louis II – Monaco play at the Stade Louis II. However the club have historically struggled to attract large attendances. Even when Monaco reached the Champions League final in 2004, the club's average domestic gate that season was just 10,394.
Level playing field? – However, a decision taken in March by the French football league means Monaco will be subject to the same tax laws as other French clubs from June next year.
Famous fans – Monaco might not attract big crowds, but they do have some regal supporters, notably club patron Prince Albert II of Monaco, who is pictured here with his wife Princess Charlene.
Inside knowledge – In the summer of 2012 Monaco signed Argentine youngster Lucas Ocampos for a reported $19m from River Plate. Former chief executive Karlsen is pictured greeting Ocampos. Before joining Monaco as technical director in March 2012, Norwegian Karlsen worked as a scout for Russian club Zenit St Petersburg.
Monaco attractions – It's not only footballers that find Monaco an attractive destination......Here guests in a swimming pool on a large boat watch the 2011 Monaco Grand Prix from the marina.