CEDRIC Soares believes Saints’ full-backs can “make the difference” in the club’s quest to open the scoring floodgates.

Manchester City spent more than £100m on new wide defenders during the summer transfer window to boost their attacking ability from the flanks.

Chelsea and Tottenham also spent around £25m apiece in that area, showing the value placed on full-backs in the modern game.

And the Saints right-back knows that he and left-back Ryan Bertrand have a responsibility to aid Mauricio Pellegrino’s men finding the net more regularly, after netting just two goals from open play in six Premier League games this term so far.

“We need to have attacking full backs because they can make the difference sometimes,” he said.

“All the teams we play are defensively organised and sometimes you need a man from the back to make up that extra man.

“This can be the full backs with crossing, overlapping and opening space, even if you don’t get the ball.

“I will always try my best for the team to support the attack.”

Cedric scored for Portugal in the Confederations Cup in the summer against Mexico, but is yet to find the net for Saints since arriving in 2015.

The 26-year-old is eager to change that but is also targeting a haul of assists this season.

“You cannot always control it,” he said. “I try always to create some chances, some crosses.

“Against Crystal Palace I nearly scored and as I say it’s important for a full-back to participate in attack but it doesn’t need to be me scoring.

“Sometimes it needs to be me giving an assist or me opening space to other players to get into the action.”

He added: “The coach likes it when a full-back can attack, but your first mission is clear and that’s to defend well and then counterattack.”

After a win against Crystal Palace and a decent second-half performance in the 1-0 defeat to Manchester United, Cedric reckons Saints are building some momentum.

“We are getting better and we understanding better the ideas of the coach,” he said. “We are controlling the ball possession better, so we are definitely getting his ideas and trying to put them on to the pitch.

“In the last two games we showed that we are becoming the team the coach wants us to be.

“He wants us to be the team that controls the game,” he added. “Our players have a lot of qualities.”