Liverpool-born William was the younger brother of England international striker Jack, who played for Liverpool and Blackpool, and was also a centre-forward.
He arrived at the club in August 1905, making his debut the following month at home against Clapton Orient. He started his career at Rossendale United before moving on to play for Bury and Plymouth Argyle.
He struggled to settle as a Fox, making just three Football League appearances before being quickly sold on to Accrington Stanley just a matter of months after his arrival at Fosse. He enjoyed his best spell north of the border with Hearts before finishing his career with Bradford Park Avenue.