RANGERS and Aberdeen really do not get on. It’s as if they used to go out with each other and then something really, really bad happened.

There will be no reconciliation. There’s zero chance they can be ‘just friends’. But these two warring factions are forced to meet one another at least four times a year – or season to us whose lives are bound to the football calendar.

The matches between the two always throw up something bonkers and Saturday’s encounter at Ibrox will give us more tales than usual, no matter what happens.

If it’s a 0-0 draw, Steven Gerrard will find himself under more pressure given the defeat to Hearts. Celtic are at Hamilton the following day and are going to win. The gap between Rangers and the champions would then widen.

However, were Rangers to win, the pressure is back on Celtic, to an extent, and their match at the Accies potentially becomes more nervous. And where would that leave Derek McInnes?

Aberdeen’s manager was told to “get to ****” by a section of his own support at St Mirren on Sunday. Defeat to the old enemy will do him no favours.

However, a win for the Dandies changes it all – for a week or so – and should Aberdeen leave with three points, and Celtic win the next day, Gerrard ‘s team would fall eight point behind Celtic and even with a game in hand, it would begin to look like nine in a row for Neil Lennon.

And this is all on the proviso that both Rangers and Celtic win this evening at home to Ross County and at St Johnstone respectively. Should either slip up tonight then Saturday becomes even more intriguing.

So many stories. So many outcomes. And all of this is without a ball being kicked.

Someone will get sent off. It always happens. The stadium will be rocking. It’s one of the best games the Premiership can throw up.

And it’s not on the television. Even for a traditionalist such as myself, the fact our best matches are not shown live drives me to despair.

What do you think sells our game better? A full Ibrox watching two of our big teams battle it out, or Celtic coasting to a 2-0 win on a Subbuteo pitch watched by two stands – one of them half empty.

And it’s at 12.30pm on a Sunday.

Imagine the Rangers-Aberdeen game at 5.30pm on Saturday. We would all want to watch that. But because the TV companies can only show four live matches from every ground, it’s on at 3pm.

This needs to be looked at. Gerrard said it himself. He couldn’t believe how some games are ignored by television so every single away match involving Rangers and Celtic is shown live. It does us no favours.

I get that the telly money has to be spread around all 12 Premiership clubs. However, there will be a way to do that and ensure that the wider football audience, should they tune into a Scottish game, gets to watch some mentally intense match with 52,000 people going mental.

If those in charge are adamant that every Old Firm away match has to be live, then fine. I do get that. It’s a numbers game and on Sunday tens of thousands of Celtic fans will tear themselves away from their Sunday chores to watch the football.

But can’t we have that and show other games as well, such as Rangers v Aberdeen or Celtic v Hearts which is coming up in a few weeks’ time?

The supporters of our two big clubs get messed about because of TV times. I feel for them. A solution could be that their game in Dingwall kicks off at 3pm on a Saturday rather than just after midday on a Sunday.

If that means supporters missing out on watching their team live, then so be it. They’ll survive. We all got through such hard times for over 100 years.

Yes, the Old Firm is the draw. Yes, they generate more interest than the other teams put together. But I’d rather a full Celtic Park or Ibrox was beamed around the planet rather than empty stands and plastic pitches.

Look, there are ways to watch these games anyway. PC Plod know which pubs have Azerbaijan TV which illegally show games that should not be seen on they telly. They don’t do anything about it because our girls and boys on the thin blue line have better things to worry about.

So, it’s not as if these matches aren’t being shown live. Why not make it official?

In the pubs where I now live, Celtic and particularly Rangers always draw a big crowd. There won’t be many Bears watching Sunday’s game from Hamilton. However, the Celtic fans I know wouldn’t miss out on ‘them’ against Aberdeen because it means so much and, let’s be frank, because it will probably kick off.

I am all for the cameras going to all the grounds but if I were in charge – alas this is not the case – ticket prices would be reduced for Paisley, Perth and Lanarkshire to lure more folk away from the pubs and front rooms to go to the actual games when they are live.

If St Johnstone v Celtic was not live on the telly, McDiarmid Park would be full which helps St Johnstone. BT or Sky will be there, which will mean thousands of empty seats, so why not slash the prices for this game.

Ach, it will never happen. It’s too sensible. People outside Scotland will continue to view our game as tinpot and that matters. Anyway, I’m off to move my satellite dish. Now, which way is Albania?

And Another Thing

My manager of the year so far is Stephen Robinson at Motherwell.

They sit three points clear in third place after what for them was a frustrating home draw with a fast-improving Hibernian side at the weekend. Not bad at all.

David Turnbull is still unavailable, there is no money to play with at Fir Park and any time a young player comes through, which happens all the time at that club, someone with deeper pockets pinches them.

And yet Motherwell are one of the league’s best and most entertaining teams. Robinson knows what he’s doing. Will he be the next one to go? I hope not.