THE only thing which should go out the window when it comes to Rangers and Celtic playing one another is anyone claiming form counts for nothing when it comes to this mayhem of a football match.

Okay, that might be a touch harsh. Instead of hurling this cliché spouter down several floors, which I presume is still illegal, ask them to show the evidence which proves this derby of derbies doesn’t tend to be won by the side which at the time happens to be stronger.

The hard to predict games came about when there was a coat of paint between the two teams; however, during times when one lorded it over the other, the team with the better players would triumph way more often than not.

Read more: Stuart McCall: Rangers need to do their talking on the pitch when it comes to Old Firm showdowns

Oh sure, down the years certain results jump out at you. Both lost 5-1 in the Old Firm game (no letters, please) in seasons in which they went on to win a treble.

During Rangers’ dominance under Walter Smith, even a bang-average Celtic side were able to win a few of these matches when beating Falkirk at home was far trickier. And Rangers, remember, won a semi-final two years ago while they were in the Championship.

Brendan Rodgers has yet to taste defeat in this fixture because Celtic are a better team than Rangers. It really is that simple.

He was helped hugely by Mark Warburton and Pedro Caixinha, both former managers at Ibrox who did rather send their teams out crying out to get well beaten, and the Celtic players were too good to turn down the many opportunities handed to them.

But things have changed, which is why Sunday’s game is the most intriguing, for me anyway, since Rangers fell out with the local face painter and were sent on a magical journey. Or something.

Graeme Murty has yet to lose to Celtic. Sure, he’s only been in charge for two games but both were at Parkhead and his side deserved their draws.

Read more: Brendan Rodgers: Rangers will have to deal with the real Moussa Dembele at Ibrox​

Should Rangers win on Sunday, and they have as good a chance now since returning to the Premiership, the gap at the top would close to three points, albeit Celtic have a game in hand.

On the other hand, a win for Celtic would all-but seal the title. A nine point gap with a game to play with and a far greater goal-difference is enough for seven in a row.

The Premiership split was introduced, in part, to give the season as exciting a finish as possible. And while we have to go back a few years, it did previously work in that way when Glasgow’s big two were involved in a genuine title race, they had to face each other and the best teams in the country in the final five matches.

Allow me to play devil’s advocate.

Let’s say Rangers win. Even if Celtic went into the top six split at least six points ahead, the games involving these two, Aberdeen, Hibernian, Hearts and probably Kilmarnock would be something to watch.

This game actually matters more than bragging rights. A home win changes this entire season, even if I personally still can’t see past Celtic winning their seventh league in a row no matter what happens on Sunday.

Read more: Stuart McCall: Rangers need to do their talking on the pitch when it comes to Old Firm showdowns

Europe is no longer an aspect, all focus now is on a successive treble and with players coming back, I can see Celtic winning by a couple.

Rangers, strangely, are better away from home and will be expected to attack more at Ibrox. This will suit Celtic and while Rangers have undoubtedly improved, they don’t have anyone the class of Scott Brown, James Forrest, Tom Rogic and also Moussa Dembele who has been more like the player from last season of late.

Ach, but what do I know. Rangers are playing well, scoring goals and the new players such as Jamie Murphy and Sean Goss aren’t carrying the scars from previous defeats.

Of course, this Rangers rebirth is all in the minds of journalists, at least according to the ‘Celtic’ bloggers who spend their days writing about Sevco, but the league table more than suggests the gap has closed.

And I, for one, am glad that the third league match between these two will to some degree settle the title race; or at least have a say in who will win the league. What’s not to like.

And, for the umpteenth time, I’m hooked. It’s silly but I can’t get enough of these two battling it out.