Arsenal Lead The Rebellion On This Day, 5th June 1981

As The Establishment Club, you might have expected Arsenal to be in vanguard of the crusade to protect the status quo, to make sure that the unfettered greed of the nouveau riche was kept in check. Instead they were on the other side of the fence, leading the way for revolution.

Prior to this day, Football Association regulations prevented directors taking a salary from their clubs. Arsenal wanted a rule change to permit one paid director per club. A small change – a not unreasonable one either – that modernised the game at the highest corporate level. In the future, it would permit the likes of David Dein to devote more of their time to the creation of the Premier League and Sky deals galore (even though the first broadcasting contract severely underestimated the value of the product to the television companies).