Hamilton, Lanarkshire born right half Willie Paterson played junior football for Earnock Rovers in 1911 and Petershill in 1912, before joining Scottish League club Hamilton Academical in 1913, where he scored 3 goals in 132 appearances as Scottish League football continued despite the First World War.
He signed for Motherwell in 1919, playing six years for The Steelmen during which time he scored once in 126 matches for ‘Well. During his spell at Fir Park he also went on loan to Bo’Ness in 1922-23, scoring once in 17 matches, and at Arbroath on 1923-24, where he played 15 matches.
Paterson joined Third Division (South) club Charlton Athletic in the summer of 1925, making his Football League debut against Exeter City the same September. He had three seasons at The Valley making 102 appearances for The Addicks, before joining non league club Bostall Heath in 1928, his last known club before his eventual retirement.