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Vince Hilaire




Date of birth



Vince Hilaire rose to prominence as part of Palace's FA Youth Cup-winning side of 1977. The following season the winger made his first-team league debut in the Second Division, whilst also playing his part in the team retaining their trophy.

READ MORE: Vince Hilaire: "I was 15...children screamed abuse at me"

Hilaire was still in his teenage years for the promotion-winning season of 1978/79, where he was a constant threat with his pace and skill.

In the 1979/80 season he was an ever-present under Terry Venables, ending the campaign with six goals to his name.

The boy from Palace's Academy was recognised at international level that season, too, winning nine England Under-21 caps - on his Three Lions debut for the U21s he scored against Bulgaria in November, 1979.

After a blistering impact Hilaire won the club’s Player of the Season trophy for 1979 and 1980.

After the club’s relegation at the end of the 1980/81 campaign, the Forest Hill youngster stayed at Selhurst Park for three more seasons before departing - after a loan spell in America - to Luton Town in the summer of 1984.

READ MORE: Palace’s record-breaking Friday night: Burnley, 1979

Signed from Palace Academy
Debut Lincoln City, March 1977
Managers at Palace Terry Venables, Ernie Walley, Malcolm Allison, Dario Gradi, Steve Kember, Alan Mullery
Appearances 293
Goals 36