Bannockburn, Stirlingshire born outside right Martin Moran began his football career with Glasgow Benburb in 1897 and signed for Glasgow Celtic in March 1898. His first game of note for Celtic was in the ‘Championship for Great Britain’ v English title holders Sheffield Utd in March 1898, which Celtic lost 1-0 away: “I played the game of my life… I haven’t played a better one since“. After several friendlies and exhibition games, his competitive debut finally came in a 4-0 defeat in the Scottish League at St Mirren on 1st October 1898 but he was one of a group of players released by the club just weeks later. He joined Clyde before the month end, making a move to clubs down south to join First Division Sheffield United in July 1899, making his Football League debut at Everton that September, but making just 7 appearances for The Blades before joining Second Division Middlesbrough in July 1900.
At Ayresome Park he was a regular performer in his first season with the club but lost his place in their 1901-02 promotion season, making just 3 appearances, and in August 1902 he joined Southern League Millwall Athletic after 6 goals in 45 appearances for ‘Boro. After two seasons at Millwall, he returned to Scotland in May 1904 joining Heart of Midlothian, but after a single season at Tynecastle, scoring once in 26 appearances, Moran returned to England to join new Second Division club Chelsea in May 1905, where he played in their inaugural League fixture, a 1-0 defeat at Stockport County on 2nd September 1905. He was a regular in his first season at Stamford Bridge as Chelsea finished 3rd, narrowly missing out on promotion, but they went one better in 1906-07, finishing Second Division runners up and gaining promotion to the top flight, Moran scoring 5 times in 21 appearances during the campaign. However he played only 10 more fixtures in the top flight in 1907-08 before re-joining Glasgow Celtic in May 1908 after 8 goals in 67 appearances for The Pensioners.
He was used by Celtic as experienced cover, “being kept for the more strenuous games where an old head is of value“. His return match was straight into the Glasgow Charity Cup Final in May 1908, with Celtic defeating Queen’s Park 3-0. In this second spell, he was to play in two League matches to add to his single previous League appearance. Ironically the first was again against St Mirren, played on 5th September 1908 practically ten years since his League debut. But again he played in a losing Celtic side to St Mirren, this time a 1-0 defeat. Thankfully he was given one more League appearance in December 1908 as Celtic defeated Aberdeen 2-0 at Pittodrie, a League victory with Celtic that was a long time in coming for Moran.
He moved to Hamilton in June 1909, and finished his career at Albion Rovers, whom he joined in October 1910.