West Bromwich born inside forward Tom Pearson played for Oak Villa in 1884 and West Bromwich Sandwell in 1885 before he turned professional with West Bromwich Albion in April 1886 and he made his senior debut in February 1887 against Notts County in the quarter final of the FA Cup, going on to play in Albion’s first FA Cup Final team in April that year losing 2-0 to Aston Villa at The Kennington Oval. The following year he was part of West Brom’s FA Cup winning team of 1888 when they beat Preston North End 2-1 at The Kennington Oval. He made his Football League debut in Albion’s first League fixture in a 2-0 win at Stoke in September 1888, and was an ever present in each of the club’s first 4 seasons without missing a fixture until November 1892.
He became the first player to score a Football League hat-trick for Albion when he scored four goals in the club’s 6-3 win against Bolton Wanderers on 4th November 1889. In a friendly match at home against Aston Villa on 11th January 1892, Pearson took Albion’s first ever penalty kick, but failed to score when he struck the ball over the crossbar. He was Albion’s top League goalscorer during their first five seasons in the Football League, including two seasons tied with Billy Bassett for the honour. In 1892 he was part of The Baggies’ team that won the FA Cup for a second time, beating Aston Villa 3-0 at The Kennington Oval.
Pearson retired in May 1894 due to a serious leg injury after 80 goals in 155 appearances in the Football League era.