They have become the great entertainers of Europe, generating more excitement than the likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich.

Games involving Saints are averaging more goals this season than any other team in the major leagues across the continent.

In the club’s seven Premier League matches so far this campaign, the ball has hit the back of the net a total of 32 times.

That works out at an average of 4.57 goals in every contest.

The figure is by far and away the most of any team in the English leagues, with Burnley’s 4.30 the only one that gets close.

Across the top European divisions it is also well in the lead.

Dutch giants PSV Eindhoven are the nearest, with 4.25 goals being averaged in each of their games in the Eredivisie.

Barcelona are the best value for goals in Spain, alongside Atletico Madrid, but those two clubs are still lagging behind on 3.71.

Roma are top in the same category in Italy, with 3.67, while Borussia Dortmund and Eintracht Frankfurt lead the way in Germany, on 3.71.

Saints’ figures have come about largely as a result of a porous defence, but also partly because of their threatening attack.

Of the 32 goals supporters have seen in their Premier League matches this campaign, 20 have been conceded by the team.

Six of those came in the thrashing away to Arsenal, while they have shipped three against Manchester City, Manchester United and Everton.

Saints are yet to keep a clean sheet in the league, with the closest they have come being the 4-1 home win against Aston Villa.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, their defensive stats are the worst across the top divisions in Europe, as well as the English leagues, averaging 2.86 goals against them every game.

The next worst is Dutch top-flight side VVV-Venlo, Maya Yoshida’s former club, on 2.63.