Edinburgh born left half Tommy Allison started his football career with Strathclyde in 1896 Having won a Scottish junior cap, Allison started his senior career in 1898 at New Brighton Tower, making his Football League debut against Gainsborough Trinity that September and immediately became a first team regular, missing only one match and being ever present in 1899-1900, scoring twice in 70 appearances over three seasons before moving to Southern League Reading when Trinity folded in 1901.
After two seasons in Berkshire, he joined West Ham United along with team mates Charles Cotton, Herbert Lyon and Ernie Watts, for West Ham’s last season at The Memorial Grounds. After scoring on his Hammers debut against Kettering Town in September 1903, Allison went on to make 165 Southern League and FA Cup appearances for the club, scoring seven goals, and often deputised as captain. He became the first West Ham player to receive a benefit match on 14th December 1907, a Western League fixture against Portsmouth. He played his last game for The Hammers on 10th April 1909, a 3-1 home victory against Watford, before retiring.