Down through the years Crystal Palace fans have been blessed with all sorts of larger than life characters who have come through the changing room doors at Selhurst Park.

There have been hard nosed managers, flamboyant forwards, and defensive hard men, all of whom have played a part in making the club what it is today.

In this piece we take a look at just some of the big personalities who flew with the Eagles, whether it was just for one season or for the bulk of their career.

Malcolm Allison

It makes sense to start with a gaffer and when it came to celebrity status Malcolm Allison was the man.

Despite having a rather rocky start to his managerial tenure at the club he continuously wowed both players and fans with his snappy clothing and his connections to the stars, once famously inviting a team of celebs such as Jimmy Tarbuck and Tommy Steele to come and have a practice game at the Palace training ground.

Following the game Allison treated the players to a decadent evening full of bubbly, Cuban cigars, and yet more celebs.

His reputation as a coach and supreme man manager was made at Man City, but by the time he was done at Palace he was equally loved in South London, no doubt inspiring the likes of Roy Hodgson along the way.

Allison liked to keep his training sessions nice and varied, with some descending into outright debauchery

Ian Wright

Most football fans have short memories and that is why Ian Wright is always remembered as predominantly being an Arsenal legend rather than a Palace god.

However, the ex-England front man scored more goals for Palace than he did for the Gunners and it was at Selhurst Park where he first cut his teeth as a professional player.

Long before the likes of modern-day hell raisers such as Mario Balotelli and Zlatan Ibrahimović were on the scene, Wright was knocking goals in at the elite level and doing it all with a mischievous grin on his face.

Although it is that playful side to Wright that is mostly picked up on by the media, it is his renowned warmth as a human being that truly sets him apart, as was evidenced when he paid an emotional tribute on Desert Island Discs to the teacher that helped turn his life around. There are plenty of other beautiful stories of Wright helping and recognising others for their good work, many of which resemble tales of Mario Balotelli during his time in Manchester when he dressed as Santa Claus and gave out money or paid off all the outstanding fines that students had accrued at their local university library. It is why we should always be glad of having such characters in football, because beneath all the madness usually lies a heart of gold.

Ian Wright did not become a professional footballer until he was 21, but then always played as if he was making up for lost time

Vince Hilaire

While he was not quite as boisterous as Wright, Vince Hilaire still made a lasting impact on Crystal Palace football club.

He stood out mainly for the stance he took against racism in the game, blazing a trail for other black players from South London to follow.

Geoff Thomas

Thomas is arguably the greatest player that Palace have ever had on their roster, with the midfielder making just shy of 250 appearances for the club and delivering the most successful period in its long history.

Away from the game he also battled cancer, facing the disease head-on to make a miraculous full recovery.

Mark Dennis

A piece such as this would not be complete without the inclusion of a hard man enforcer, and Mark Dennis was most certainly that and then some.

He only stayed for one season at Selhurst Park, but in that time he took a swing at Paul Gascoigne before going on to receive 12 red cards throughout his career. His attitude on the pitch and off it earned him the nickname, Psycho.