This guide was written for FM 2014.

Scouting assignments determine how your scouting team is utilised to provide you information on different players and teams.

To use your scouting team most effectively you should take the time to set up scouting assignments yourself. To do this you will first need to make sure that you have not delegated this task to either your chief scout or director of football on the Responsibilities tab of the Staff screen.

Read Scouting For Moyes to get the inside story of the life of a football scout.

Scouting Range

Your scouting range is set by your club's board and determines the areas of the world that you are allowed to send scouts to. Depending on the stature of your club you may be restricted to scouting in your own nation, your local region, or your continent, or you may be allowed to scout globally.

You can view your current scouting range on the Overview tab of the Board screen or on the left hand panel of the Scouting screen.

You can ask the board to increase the scouting range from the Board Overview screen by using the Make Board Request button and choosing Scouting Range from the Networking category. However, the board may reject your request if you have not yet increased the stature of your club.

Managing Scouting Assignments

On the Assignments tab of the Scouting screen you can create new assignments and view details of existing assignments. You can also change the priority of existing assignments.

The Reports column shows the number of players that have been reported on in each assignment. You can view the players reported on in an assignment by clicking this number. This will take you to the relevant scout's Reports screen where you can use different conditions to filter the players as you desire, while you can also use the filter by assignment drop-down to view players the scout has reported on outside this assignment.

You can request an update on the players a scout has found on his current assignment by viewing or right-clicking the scout and then selecting Get Update On Scouting Assignments.

Types of Scouting Assignment

You can send a scout on a player assignment or a team assignment by clicking the Create New Assignment button.

Player Assignments

A player assignment requires a scout to find and report on players that meet your specified conditions. There are several different player assignment templates that you can select from. Each template specifies a different set of default conditions that your a scout will apply during his assignment. The player assignment templates are:

  • First Team Player, Backup Player and Hot Prospect - These templates can be used to search for particular types of player. The template that you choose determines the minimum current ability and minimum potential ability specified in the default conditions. You can refine the template if you wish by specifying a position and role. The position and role that you choose, if any, are also specified in the default conditions, while the role you choose, if any, determines the desirable attributes that are specified in the default conditions.
  • Replacement For - This template can be used to search for players who could potentially become at least as good as a particular player in your squad could potentially become. You must specify a position and a player in your squad who can play in that position. The player who you choose determines the desirable attributes and the minimum potential ability that are specified in the default conditions. The desirable attributes specified are based on the player's best attributes and the mininum potential ability specified is equal to the player's potential ability.
  • Report From a Competition, Nation or Region - These templates can be used to build up scouting knowledge and search for players in a geographical area or a competition. You must choose the competition, nation or region and this determines the scope that is specifed in the default conditions.

After choosing a player assignment template to specify appropriate default conditions you can then modify the conditions of the assignment as you desire. The conditions include:

  • Transfer Type - The type of transfer, either full transfer, loan or end of contract agreement, that the scout believes could be used to sign a player.
  • Transfer Budget - The maximum transfer fee that a player should be available for as assessed by the scout. This can help you to split your transfer budget between players and to avoid overspending on a single player.
  • Age - The age range that a player should currently be in. This can allow you to search specifically for young players who can be developed at your club or for older players who can add experience to your team or be used for tutoring.
  • Minimum Current Ability - The minimum current ability star rating (including black stars) that a player should have as assessed by the scout. This can help you to find players who could immediately contribute to your squad (or to another team on loan), whether as a first team player, rotational player or backup player.
  • Minimum Potential Ability - The minimum potential ability star rating (including black stars) that a player should have as assessed by the scout. This can help you to find players who could possibly be developed to reach a certain ability level. Combining this with a lower minimum current ability can help you to find players who can perhaps be signed at a cheaper price than players who have already reached a similar potential ability.
  • Desirable Attributes - The particular attributes that a player should ideally have good ratings in. You can set minimum required ratings for particular attributes by clicking the Specify Attribute Values button after selecting desirable attributes.
  • Additional Conditions - These include the position and role that players can play or partially play, among other conditions. Specifying a position can help you to find players for a position where you need an extra man as either a first team player, rotational player, backup player or hot prospect in order to build a balanced squad. Specifying a role can help you to find players who would suit your tactical requirements in a position.
  • Scope - The competition, nation or region that players should be based in. If you select a region then the scout will choose multiple nations to scout within that region. Alternatively, you can set the scope to Scouting Range to allow the scout to choose a region within your club's scouting range. Therefore, to gain control over the specific nations that the scout goes to you must select a nation or competition.
  • Scout - The scout who will undertake the assignment. You can choose a scout yourself or ask your chief scout to choose. If you want the scout to find players with a specified minimum current ability who can immediately contribute to your squad then it is advisable to use a scout with good Judging Player Ability. If you want the scout to find young players with a specified minimum potential ability who you can develop then it is advisable to use a scout with good Judging Player Potential. If you are sending a scout to a nation or region then it is advisable to send a scout who already has good knowledge of the nation or of nations in the region if possible. Otherwise, the scout should ideally have good Adaptability.
  • Duration - How long the scout should continue the assignment for. Until Finished means that the assignment will end when the scout has finished looking for players. Ongoing means that the assignment will continue until you manually end it.
  • Priority - Whether the assignment is normal or very urgent. A very urgent priority instructs the scout to find and report on players more quickly. However, he will find less players as a result.

Regardless of the conditions you set, you will be able to filter the players a scout has reported on during his assignment on his Reports screen if you want to search for specific types of player. Therefore, you may not want to restrict an assignment too much by setting conditions that are too specific. For example, by not using the role condition you can allow your scout to find and report on more players and then use your own judgement as to whether a player would be suitable for a particular role.

Team Assignments

A team assignment (report on a team) requires a scout to provide a team report rather than reports on individual players. A team reports includes a variety of information, including statistical information and a squad depth report, that can help you to identify a team's strengths and weaknesses.

You will receive a summary of a team report in your inbox and can then view the full report by clicking Team Report. This takes you to the club's Team Report screen where you can navigate the different sections of the report from the Team Report drop-down.

The scout with the highest Tactical Knowledge attribute will undertake team assignments. It is advisable to avoid giving this scout other assignments if possible so that he does not have to travel between assignments frequently.

You can select from the following two types of team assignment:

  • Ongoing reports on next opposition - It is advisable to ensure that you have this assignment activated before the start of a season so that you will receive a team report on the next opposition team a few days before each match. The scout will also advise you on an appropriate match preparation training focus to use before the match.
  • Report on specific team - The scout will provide you with a team report on a team of your choice.

How to Assign Your Scouts

Although you are free to decide how to assign your scouts, a recommended approach is to:

  • Allow one scout to concentrate on scouting your next opposition, as explained above.
  • Leave at least one scout with very good Judging Player Ability and Judging Player Potential free to scout specific players, as explained below.
  • Ensure that a selection of scouts are generally on assignments scouting different nations. It is advisable to scout nations rather than regions so that you can specify the nations that the scouts go to. You can instruct a scout to go to multiple specific nations by creating different assignments and setting the duration to until finished. As explained in the Scouting Knowledge guide, it is advisable to focus mainly on nations that are more important for your club, and to manage the assignments of each scout carefully. To do this you may want to instruct each scout to concentrate on building and maintaining knowledge in a separate, manageable selection of nations, perhaps within a particular region so as to reduce travelling expenses, with the focus being on more important nations. Eventually, this will result in scouts being assigned to nations that they have high knowledge in, therefore increasing the efficiency of your scouting. If you have, or are able to sign, scouts who already have good knowledge in particular regions then this will help to speed up this process.
  • Any further scouts can be used to find specific types of players, such as players for your senior squad or hot prospects, or to scout competitions. In particular, you may want to scout the competitions that your club plays in so as to increase knowledge levels for the players in the opposition teams and make tactical planning and setting opposition instructions easier, while you may also want to scout youth competitions for hot prospects.

Scouting Specific Players

You can also ask any of your scouts, or any of your coaches, to scout a specific player. This may be a player who you have identified yourself, or it may be a player who a scout has already reported on and you want an updated report, a more detailed report or simply a report from a scout with higher ability.

You should do this whenever you have highlighted a player who you may be interested in signing. If you are still interested in the player following an initial scout report then it is advisable to increase your player knowledge level, as explained in the Scouting Knowledge guide, by using a scout with very good Judging Player Ability and Judging Player Potential to scout the player for a period of time or a number of matches. This will enable you to gain as accurate a report as possible before deciding whether to try to sign the player.

You should only send a scout to watch a player in matches if he features for a team in competition that is loaded in your game.

To scout a player select Assign Scout from his Reports drop-down and then select your desired scout. Alternatively, you can choose to add the player to your scouting pool to be scouted whenever a member of your scouting team becomes available. You can view and edit the list of players on your scouting pool on the Queue tab of the Scouting screen.

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