- Searching for ‘Any’ means your scout’s experience rating doesn’t matter
- You can now find fast players – and ‘physically strong’ can produce players who are fast and strong
- There is some variation based on a player’s position, even within the same player type
Welcome to the FIFA 16 scouting guide!
New to scouting in FIFA games and wondering what it’s all about? Or maybe you’re a seasoned scout and want to know what’s changed in FIFA 16? Whatever your situation, my guides will help you become a pro at scouting the next generation of superstars.
This guide will explain what each player type means and what type of players you’ll get if you search for each one. If you want to know where the best places are to scout, how to spot the best players, how to use the player training feature and more, head over to my FIFA 16 scouting guide hub page – I’ll be adding more guides soon, so keep checking back.
Before we get started, a quick note: a player’s position now seems to be as important as his type. Wide players with the ‘winger’ player type now seem to be faster than attacking midfield ‘winger’ types, for example. This ‘positional awareness’ of different scouted player types, as it were, is a big improvement on previous FIFA games – sprint speed and acceleration are now among wingers’ best stats, as opposed to the sluggish-but-skilled wide players we’ve been cursed with over the past few years.
Anyway, let’s dive in and examine the different player types that you can scout.
Although it’s not a player type, it’s worth mentioning the ‘Any’ category. Telling your scout to search for this will mean he’s not limited to looking for one player type, so you can get all sorts on your reports.
It also means that your scout’s experience rating is irrelevant. Experience determines how likely your scout is to find the player type you’re after, but if you tell your scout not to worry about player types then obviously his experience doesn’t matter.
That means that if you want to save a bit of cash and aren’t looking for any particular player type, you can hire a scout with good judgment but a lower experience rating and won’t be negatively affected.
Attackers seem to come in three varieties: wingers, central midfielders (including CAM) and (very rarely) full backs. And yes, you read that right – once again it appears that you cannot find strikers by searching for attackers. EA still have not fixed this (either that or they’re happy with it being this way). I suggest if you’re looking for strikers, you search for technically gifted or physically strong players, or perhaps wingers.
Attackers who end up on the wing (as RW, LW, RM or LM) tend to have fairly decent pace – not usually in the 80s, but acceleration and sprint speed in the mid 70s is not uncommon. This is a huge boost over FIFA 15, where we used to find wide players with pace in the 60s and even 50s.
As well as that, winger attackers will usually (but not often) have better shooting stats than dribbling and crossing stats. Think of them as wide strikers, as players more likely to score goals than to create them for teammates.
Central midfield attackers (those with the CM or CAM positions) are slightly different. They aren’t usually as fast as winger attackers, but their technical stats are roughly similar. Again, they’re usually better at shooting than passing and crossing. You may find that this means attacker player types with the CM position are quite low rated – because their passing is not great, their OVR gets negatively affected. If you find a player like this who nevertheless has good potential, it might be worth pushing him forward as a CAM or striker.
As I mentioned above, you can also get full backs with the attacker player type. These players are heavily mispositioned – although their pace may be OK, they are far, far better at shooting and dribbling than they are at tackling, meaning their OVRs are almost always low. And because there’s no May update in FIFA 16, they won’t get a massive stat boost any time, so they’ll have an excruciatingly low OVR even if they have high potential. Your best bet in this case is, unfortunately, to discard them.
Like the attacker player type, defensive minded players can usually be found in three positions: full back, defensive midfield and central midfield. And also like attackers, there seems to be a major omission – I found it impossible to find centre backs with the defensive minded player type (please let me know if you’ve had any more luck). This is a big change from FIFA 15 (and a bizarre one) – last year you could easily find defensive minded centre backs. Why you can’t any more is a mystery to me, but it seems to mean that if you want to find centre backs, look for physically strong players.
Anyway, let’s start with defensive minded full backs – and here we have some good news. Back in FIFA 15, defensive minded full backs were basically mispositioned centre backs – extremely slow but with excellent tackling stats. Now, however, that seems to have been fixed. In FIFA 16 they have decent (but not usually amazing) pace, hovering around the late 60s and early 70s (and mid 70s if you’re lucky).
As well as that, their strength is usually fairly good and their technical stats are quite well balanced between attack and defence. In other words, they’re a bit more like real full backs (albeit slightly lacking in pace). In FIFA 15 it was impossible to find realistic full backs – you either got mispositioned centre backs or mispositioned wingers. Now, however, EA seem to have fixed that.
As for defensive minded central and defensive midfielders, the stats for these two positions are very similar – so similar, in fact, as to be almost identical. Physical stats tend to be broadly average (although they are usually among the players’ best stats), while technical stats seem to be focused on defending (with decent tackling and marking stats) but with other stats being OK as well. However, because their dribbling stats are poor and their passing stats are average, defensive minded players who are central midfielders tend to have lower OVRs than their CDM counterparts.
Compare this player type to last year, where you would get players with amazing defending stats and terrible stats everywhere else, and you’ll see that defensive minded players are much more balanced in FIFA 16.
Unlike with other positions, it seems like you will only get goalkeepers on your reports if you search for them. What I mean by that is when searching for, say, playmakers, you’ll often get other player types on your reports. When you search for goalkeepers, you only get goalkeepers, so your scouts seem to be much more accurate here. That means that you could have a scout with poor experience (the attribute that determines how likely he is to find the player type you’re looking for) and you’d still get 100% goalkeepers, which will help overcome his bad experience.
In terms of their goalkeeper stats, there can be quite a lot of variation. Some goalkeepers are very well balanced across all their GK stats, while some specialise in certain stats at the expense of others, but there are a couple of standout points. Firstly, diving and kicking usually seem to be a little better than their other stats. Secondly, positioning usually seems to be worse than their other stats – sometimes by quite a long way. This is where player training can be useful to bring their positioning up to scratch.
One final thing to note is that you shouldn’t be alarmed if you have a 16 year old keeper who is pretty short – players now grow up to their 17th birthday in FIFA 16, as opposed to their 16th birthday in FIFA 15. So if you have, say, a 5’9” 16 year old goalkeeper, he should grow to over 6’0” when he hits 17. Funnily enough, if you promote him when he’s 16 then he’ll grow to the height he was going to be at age 17 anyway – so that 5’9” goalkeeper in my save grew to 6’5” when I promoted him, even though he was still 16.
Oh, and goalkeepers can still have weirdly good skill move ratings – even five star skill moves – although it’s rare. So if you’re feeling daring, why not take on a few outfield players with your keeper’s tricks? What could possibly go wrong…
Physically strong players can be found in any central outfield position on the pitch (CB, CDM, CM, CAM, CF and ST), as well as at full back.
The first thing you’re likely to notice with this player type is their physical stats are usually pretty good. It’s now not uncommon to find physically strong players who are both fast and strong, as well as being great in the air and having strong stamina. In FIFA 15 they’d pretty much just be strong, if you were lucky. If you weren’t they’d be extremely slow and have strength in the 60s. This is a great improvement and is particularly good for physically strong full backs, who can now have both the pace and strength to deal with opposition threats.
In terms of technical stats, in previous versions of FIFA physically strong players would be just as good at defending as they were at attacking. This is because the game only had one ‘template’ for this player type, and applied it to all players whether they were centre backs or strikers.
That’s still true – sort of. Whereas before, all physically strong players would be equally good at finishing and at tackling, now it seems the best technical stats of almost all physically strong players are long shots, stand tackling and dribbling. So they’re still good at attacking and defending, but not quite in the same way as in FIFA 15.
This has a concerning implication for physically strong strikers, though, as it means they aren’t as deadly as they used to be. While they often have decent heading in FIFA 16, for some reason their finishing can be pretty poor. The game doesn’t seem to take account of their position, so you may struggle to score with them. Whether their excellent physical stats counterbalance this and make them a decent threat in the air remains to be seen.
In the past, playmaker was the worst player type to scout because it produced broken players. You’d find midfielders with insane vision and reactions (in the early to mid 90s), but all their other stats would be garbage. I’m talking all physical stats in the 40s, for example. They were next to useless. Thankfully, EA have fixed this and playmakers are now very viable players to use in your team.
You will mainly find playmakers in three positions: central midfield, attacking midfield or either right or left midfield. The good thing about this type of player is they are very well rounded in terms of the technical stats, usually possessing good passing, dribbling and crossing skills. This makes them ideal central midfielders who can be used to dictate the play and create chances for teammates.
Unfortunately their physical stats aren’t quite as good – they’re not usually bad, per se, and are nowhere near as diabolical as in earlier versions of FIFA, but they’re nothing special. Expect to find acceleration and sprint speed in the 60s, for example. The one physical stat that playmakers often seem to do well in is agility. However, because of their lacklustre pace, they’re not ideally suited to playing on the wing (despite their good crossing).
Interestingly, you quite often find playmakers who have good FK accuracy and curve stats, making them ideal dead ball specialists. Develop them over time and you could end up with some very capable free kick takers.
Also note that it is possible to find playmakers at full back, although it is very rare. Unfortunately, their OVRs are usually pretty low as they’re not very good at tackling, but they quite often have very good passing and FK accuracy stats to make up for it. If you simply put them at central midfield instead of full back, you could find that they’re pretty useful players.
Technically gifted players can be found in pretty much any midfield position, as well as up front as strikers. No matter what position they’re in, their best stats are usually their ball control and dribbling, followed by their passing stats. This makes them excellent attacking midfielders or centre forwards, able to use their good dribbling to beat defenders and get into dangerous positions.
It also makes them good wide players. They can come with pace in the 70s, which combines well with their strong ball control and dribbling. This is the type of player to look for if you like creating goals by beating defenders, rather than through passing moves or crosses.
You can get technically gifted strikers, and given their strengths you might consider this position to be a natural fit. However, their finishing stat can frequently be below par, and their heading is always very poor. While they can beat defenders, they may not be able to finish the chances they create, so I’d stick to playing them in midfield instead.
It is also possible to find technically gifted players at defensive midfield. However, they not suited to this at all because their tackling stats are very low, and the game punishes them with low OVRs accordingly. If you do find a technically gifted defensive midfielder, play them higher up the pitch and they should be fine.
Hallelujah, praise be, wingers are finally fixed! Yes, you can actually get pacey wide players now in FIFA. That surely is worth celebrating. In fact, wingers can even be fast if they have poor technical stats – in previous FIFA games, weak technical stats were a guarantee of lousy physical stats.
Most wingers you find will be either right/left midfielders or right/left wingers. Most that you find will have pace in the mid 70s, and it’s possible to get players with acceleration and sprint speed in the late 70s and even 80s. Strangely, occasionally you will find a player with one high speed stat and one low one, like 80 acceleration and 65 sprint speed. Thankfully, this doesn’t seem to happen to often.
As for technical stats, wingers usually have good crossing and curve stats, making them ideal chance creators for your team. They can also have good dribbling stats too. Thanks to all this, the idea of having two scouted wingers and a scouted target man up front is now a genuine reality (as long as the target man can head the ball – see the physically strong section). In the past, scouted wingers would usually have pace in the 60s (or early 70s if you were incredibly lucky), meaning you had to rely on regens if you were looking for fast players. Happily, that should now be a thing of the past.
You can also get wingers up front and at centre forward. As with wingers in other positions, crossing and dribbling are their main attributes (alongside their pace), and their finishing isn’t great. You could put them up front and train their finishing, and eventually they could be deadly. It might take a bit of patience, though.
However, it appears that you can no longer get winger full backs. In FIFA 15 and earlier this type of player could be insane – they’d start with an awful OVR, but then the May update would come along and their technical and physical stats would all skyrocket, making them absolute world beaters. But I searched and I searched in FIFA 16 and could find no trace of them at all. But don’t be too sad, it’s probably a good thing – seeing as there’s no longer a May update, they’d never get that huge stat boost and so would likely always have poor OVRs. And they’re not the only way of getting fast players any more either, so you probably won’t miss them too much – if you can find a defensive minded full back with good pace then you’re set.
Thanks for reading part one of the FIFA 16 scouting guide. If you have any thoughts on this or the YouTube video, make sure you let me know in the comments below.