Cambuslang, Lanarkshire born right half William Brown began his football career with Flemington Hearts and played for Cambuslang Rangers before being signed by Scottish League club Partick Thistle in 1913, from where he was signed by First Division club Everton in July 1914. He made his Football League debut in a win over Manchester City in December 1914, and played 3 further matches after the New Year, all wins, as Everton won the League Championship. However his career was then interrupted by the suspension of peacetime football due to the onset of the First World War in May 1915,
After the conflict’s resolution he returned to Goodison Park in 1919, breaking into the first team in November 1919 to play 21 matches during the first peacetime season, after which he featured intermittently for three more seasons. He broke into the Everton team on a regular basis from the start of the 1923-24 campaign, which proved the most productive of his career as he played 39 matches, and he continued as a regular for three further seasons before losing his place in February 1927. Described as “one of the best attack half backs in the country, stylish and constructive, strong alike in defence and in attack”, he featured only twice in Everton’s 1927-28 League Championship winning campaign, and joined Second Division club Nottingham Forest in May 1928 after 179 matches for The Toffees, during which he never scored. He failed to make much impression during his two seasons at The City Ground, and made only 5 appearances for Forest, joining non league Prescot Cables in 1930, his final known club before his eventual retirement.