Desborough, Northamptonshire born full back Alf Tirrell started his football career with Peterborough City in 1912, and joined Southern League West Ham United in the summer of 1913 making his debut at Crystal Palace in February 1914. His initial two seasons at Upton Park saw him on the fringes of the first team making only 7 appearances before the suspension of peacetime football due to World War One, and after one Wartime League match for the Hammers in November 1915 he didn’t return to football until 1918, when he played a further 30 wartime matches for them.
Resuming in 1919-20 he was back on the fringe however, making his first and only Hammers Football League appearance in a Second Division match at Barnsley in September 1919. He joined Luton Town in the summer of 1920 and played in their inaugural home fixture in the Football League against Portsmouth at Kenilworth Road that August, scoring once in 41 appearances during their inaugural League campaign. He played for 3 more seasons for The Hatters playing his last of 130 games in September 1923, and having scored half a dozen times during his Luton career he left the club and the professional game in 1924.