A Guide to Filters and Shortlists

Transfers do not happen by mistake. For me, they are the effect of fastidious scouting, aided by a comprehensive collection of filters and shortlists.

This is a guide to filters and shortlists in Football Manager 2017. In this piece, I will talk through a crucial set of in-game tools at my disposal to help with one of the most significant tasks I have as manager; strengthening my squad through thoroughly scouted acquisitions.

I talk through how I use custom views, filters, and shortlists to ensure the time and resources I have available are only spent on areas of need. Reap the rewards of the initial effort invested up front for seasons to come with these hints and tips.

Creating custom views.

Before I even setup my filters and shortlists, I setup my custom view for the Scouting page. This isn’t a prerequisite for you, however, I like to have information presented to me on the screen that is pertinent to my decision making, i.e., am I going to invest time scouting this player. My custom view looks like this.

All Known Players

To create a custom view, I will use the default ‘General Info’ view, and then right-click on the header bar > ‘Customise Current View…’, > select the following items.

Information, position, name, club, knowledge level, scout’s opinion of player’s potential ability, scout’s opinion of player’s current ability, scout recommendation, determination, contract expiry date, height, weight, age, minimum fee release clause, scout’s opinion of player’s minimum asking price, scouts opinion of player’s minimum wage demand, asking price, value.

Quick Tip: You can easily rearrange the order in which the columns appear by going to ‘Customise Current View’ > select a header from the right-hand table > use the ‘Move Up’ and ‘Move Down’ arrows.

You can change the sort order by any of the columns by selecting the column name, e.g., if you want a quick view of who has the highest determination, select the determination header and the table will sort by highest to the lowest determination (select it again to sort lowest to highest).

Once I have my view in place, I set about creating custom filters.

Creating custom filters.

When you first open the Scouting page you will be presented with all known players in your scouting network. Those who you have scouted before will have a star rating. This list can run into the thousands. The key task for me is to filter that list down to a select few who become players of interest and potential signings.

My filters are not too comprehensive, however, I’m quite rigid when it comes to mining for specific attributes since I am meticulous when I need first team player’s to perform a specific role within the team.

I have filters for each of the player roles I use, along with some other more generic ones, e.g., under 21 players with expiring contracts who possess good passing, decisions and first touch as I might take a gamble on these players with a view to moulding them into potential backup midfielders.

To create a filter select ‘Quick Search’ (the word, not the drop down next to it) from the ‘Conditions’ heading, and like you would do when creating a scouting assignment, select your parameters for the player you want to find.

Screen Shot 2017-06-12 at 18.24.35.png

In this example, I will create a filter for a Ball Winning Midfielder, as this is a key role for me within my system. From the player search pop-up, you can choose your parameters so I will select ‘first team player’ > ‘midfield centre’ > ‘Ball Winning Midfielder’. After selecting ‘Next’, I am then able to further parameterize my search.

From the next screen, I will ‘Specify Attribute Values’ from the bottom right of the pop-up to select the key attributes needed to perform this role: tackling, aggression, bravery, determination, teamwork, work rate, stamina, and strength.

The screen will highlight all desirable attributes for this role, however, it doesn’t differentiate between key and preferable attributes. To view this you’ll need to view a players attributes and look for ones highlighted in blue (with grey being preferable).

I will set the current and potential ability as required for the stature of my club.


Screen Shot 2017-06-12 at 18.55.09.png

Once I select ‘Ok’, I am then presented with a list of filtered Ball Winning Midfielders who match my search criteria. Select ‘Filter Options’ from the top right, ‘Save Current Filter’ as Ball Winning Midfielder.

Once this is setup, you can use it as much as required by selecting it from the ‘Filter Options’ list. However, bear in mind that these players will not be 100% scouted yet, so their attributes will be within a certain range that match your criteria, e.g., 13-16.

Screen Shot 2017-06-12 at 18.30.57.png

So now we need to go ahead and scout the players.

Scouting Players.

I give each of my scouts a nickname to ensure I know their speciality when using them to provide scout reports. I simply add (JPP) or (JPA) at the end of their name. This allows me to quickly view whether they specialise in judging a players ability or potential

When I am ready to scout the players, with the returned list of filtered players in front of me, I will select all the players, right click > ‘Scouting’ > ‘Assign Scout’ > choose a specific scout good at judging player ability > ‘Don’t watch. Report Card Only’

Screen Shot 2017-06-12 at 18.35.20.png

Quick Tip: To select multiple players to scout at once, select a blank area by the name of the top player, hold shift, and then select a blank area by the name of the bottom player. All inclusive players should now be selected. A green tick next to their name will highlight this.

The scout report will be a very high-level report but it will give you an indication of whether it is worth getting a detailed scout report at a later date. For example, the initial scout report might highlight that a player is an injury prone, in which case I won’t proceed with my interest.

Where the initial report comes back positive, I will then ask that the scout spend time watching him until full knowledge is attained. Right click > ‘Scouting’ > ‘Assign Scout’ > select a scout with ‘JPP’ nickname > ‘Until Full Knowledge’.

Once full knowledge is attained, I will then check over their attributes to ensure those that were within a range are on the better side of my minimum permissible value. You may need to scout them more than once to attain 100% knowledge.

Once a scout report comes back favourably, I will add them to a shortlist to ensure I can keep track of their progress and to allow me to make a bid at a more appropriate time, e.g., when they have a year left on their contract.

Creating custom shortlists.

Once I have a player I would like to keep an eye on, I will add him to a custom shortlist. To create a shortlist simply select ‘Player Shortlist’ > ‘Shortlists’ > ‘New Shortlist…’ and give it a name. For example, I could create a shortlist called Ball Winning Midfielders. When I want to add a player to it I simply Right Click on the player > ‘Add to Shortlist’ > pick the relevant shortlist to use.

Another benefit to using shortlists is that you will get a notification on their key activity, e.g., when another club makes a bid for them, or when their contract is due for expiry.

So that is it. Quite simple but very effective.

If you have any questions I’m happy for you to fire them my way and I will do my best to answer them.


One Reply to “A Guide to Filters and Shortlists”

  1. Brilliant piece
    I have your emails all the time, I’ve got over 333 in my sub folder of my email that I haven’t got to read so it is there until I have! We support Gillingham I know it’s hard but I was born bred there use to go on a Saturday for 25pence but in the 70s (I’m only just getting to being 50 this year! My son’s name is Gary. F. Cole GFC for short. I wanted to call him Winston Chalkie!! But I got away with Gary just happen to think of a name beginning with ‘F’ Singer and hero the 1 and only… Freddie Mercury, he was the greatest every rock star plus he loves him to for some reason!!! He has seen all my stuff of their’s I’ve collected over years.
    Would it be possible cos I’m trying 2 help my son who’s disabled, he and myself find it hard to do? Not quick got all the understanding for each position as yet (still trying 2 explain and get him to help him remember.) Would you be able 2 do a simple one for all the positions that can be played. I understand this can be a lot of hard work.
    I’m a dad who’s a chef who’s still getting to understand how to do emails. Still trying 2 play our 1st season together with him we’ve never done yet! in 7 years we get to October and then the new game comes out and we start again. Well, we decided this year we going to do the Full year before we buy the new one. It seems to take us forever to play a match because you got all the highlights of a game which sometimes you just want to skip but I haven’t got a clue how.
    The thing is that I only know how to download from the steam workshop would you be able put them on there so can put them in the right place. ( that would be a wonderful help to me personally I still haven’t got the hang of putting the faces packs on as yet, let alone change a skin). I can’t follow instructions without screen shots I’m dyslexic and struggle reading. The screenshots are a great idea, the same as doing your routines how do you get them so the change each time? Every time I do a different tactic formation I have to do new tactic for throwing corners free kick, how do you mix them up, I still don’t understand it how you save them. I love you short corner, plus the long throwing routine.
    I really enjoy your reads and your saves stories. Gary can’t wait to I come home from work the 1st thing I have to do is see if there is an email from you. I can’t do anything until I’ve checked honest. (Do you make any of the stuff up to add to it or is it all real? Once again it’s not the same if there isn’t an email each day he’s disappointed but I manage to put another one in but he thinks that’s only once a week! He’s liking the Dover save story at the minute from Darwen I think.
    I hope the new 2018 one will have it laid out the same, or why they can’t just do it as a download update, I know its money making scheme. They could bring out new features and updates for each season, charge so much so they would get there £40 pounds anyway or do enough updates that you pay a fee up front.
    I’m not sure how they do their ideas but I would like to see maybe being able to negotiate with a bank manager for loans or be able to pay back more if you have an extra amount from a transfer. In the playoffs, I’d like to see them present a trophy same as in Cup finals. (On the old Amiga they use to give you adverts to get sponsors around the ground for and pay you so much. If you take on a small club maybe being able to see your ground and training stuff improve as you get them after so many weeks like floodlights, mini bus, car parks being built to help supporters and earn extra income, not sure if that would be going too far off the beaten track? charging for car parking, maybe hire out the conference center, suites boxes, catering, getting your next shirt sponsor. End of season sponsors, Player of year awards for your club sell tickets to get to see your hero’s again extra income help the lower league clubs. Tours of the stadiums, having a trophy cabinet and showing the board room etc with the old pictures of what the ground looked like when it was just a park beach and you had to put 50pence in the meter for pay & display. just other ideas that maybe could be used to get more income etc.Maybe have an office, portacabin, porter loos burger vans ice cream wagons etc which have 2 be hired.
    So I’ve taken over 2hours 1 finger typing looking for the letters on the keyboard. It’s also done a spell check too whether it makes sense I don’t know. I think I’ve bored you enough now I would have thought? Kind thoughts keep up the good work love the tips which come in handy if you know where they go and how to get them there. ( Like your idiots guide with screen shot because I have to follow them step by step back and forth.) shame they can’t give you subfolders within steam so the tactic all go together if you say did 1 yesterday you put three others in faces, a database, leagues or even face packs etc. so you could a least find them and not be all over the place. then say another day you see another good tactic instead just saving and going as the next one the all went into like what they do on the main workshop so you can find 350 tactics face packs 10 etc in your personal folder… They probably do I just don’t know where to look to find and how to do it.
    Kind thoughts keep up the good work love the tips which come in handy if you know where they go and how to get them there.

    Kind Regards
    Tony and Gary

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