Centre forward David Wilson came from the mining village of Hebburn-on-Tyne in Northumberland, where he played for the local colliery side, when Willie McAndrew signed him for Hamilton Academical in 1928. He would go on to become the best goalscorer the club ever produced. He made his Scottish League debut against Hibernian in November 1928 and although he didn’t score, he was troublesome to the visitors defence and was unlucky on a couple of occasions not to open his account. By 1930, on the back of his fine season in 1929-30, it was said of him that “several English managers would have liked to take him back to his native land. A forceful leader, Wilson can hold his line together, and shoot with either foot”.
On August 22nd 1930 he scored four times against Dundee at Douglas Park in a 6-2 win in the Scottish First Division. He had an excellent record in Scottish Cup matches though when Douglas Park’s biggest ever crowd, 28,690, turned up on March 3rd 1937 in the competition he didn’t score when Accies surprisingly defeated Heart of Midlothian 2-1 on a Wednesday afternoon.
He scored a hat trick no less than 25 times in Scottish League and Cup matches and he scored four goals in a match on three occasions. He was described in 1935 as “the outstanding centre forward in Scotland at the present time… A strong well built player, Wilson has not only exceptional shooting power but good ball control and is accurate with his head.”
On leaving Hamilton in 1945 he had scored 287 goals in 360 appearances. He joined Stranraer where he teamed up with former Accies colleague, Jacky Cox. Wilson was without any question the most famous of all Accies pre-Second World War players. Had he been born in Scotland, many good judges were of the opinion that he would have been selected to play for the national side, as it was he was taken as a member of the Scottish Football Association party which toured Canada in 1935. During the tour he played in 7 matches and scored 11 goals which included 2 hat tricks to finish joint second top scorer.