Barton recently joined Glasgow giants Rangers on a free transfer after leaving Premier League-bound Burnley.
The Gers will feature in the Scottish Premiership next season after winning the Scottish Championship title with ease this past campaign.
This is the first time that Rangers will play in the Scottish top flight since 2012, and this has increased interest in football in Scotland.
Some Celtic fans still believe that the Gers' presence in the Scottish Premiership does not make a difference, as the Bhoys have flourished without them and can do so in their absence.
Former Newcastle United and Queens Park Rangers midfielder Barton has revealed that even Celtic’s majority shareholder Desmond has welcomed Rangers’ return to the Scottish top flight.
“I was talking to Dermot Desmond and JP McManus at a golf tournament just a couple of weeks ago and they were talking of its importance,” Barton told The Scottish Sun.
“In any sporting environment the rivalry brings out the best in you. Rivalry is healthy. In all kinds of sport it’s important. You need that, you need competition.
“As someone who watches football it’s clear that Scottish football has suffered from not having Rangers in the top division and it’s great to have the Old Firm back on the agenda next season.”
Many Rangers fans will expect the team to compete with Celtic for the Scottish Premiership title next season.
While that may not be feasible, Mark Warburton’s side should be pushing for the second or the third spot in the table during the 2016-17 campaign.
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