Regular readers will already be aware that there are two football teams in Bristol, and that one is massively better than the other.

No this isn't an outrageously unscientific claim, because in football, as opposed for instance to painting or cookery, success can be measured by a precise yardstick. To be a good football team, you have to score many goals compared to the number you concede, win matches, and progress to as high a level as possible.

Because City are top (I said We! Are! Top-of-the-league! etc etc) of the Championship, the second best division, and Rovers are 17th in League One, the third best division (I said They! Are! Seventeenth-in-a-shit-league!), therefore my statement is simply true, in a way that similar statements about Tracy Emin v Damien Hurst or chicken vindaloo v pasta carbonara are not true. People who dispute this clear statement of fact are thus comparable to people who maintain that life was created in 4004 BC in their sheer bovine, obstinate wrongness.

And now we know why. Scientists at Plymouth and Durhan Universities have analysed team results, and have concluded that teams in red do better than teams in blue. The precise causal relationship is unclear. In other words, they don't know whether playing in red helps you to win in itself, or whether the redness attracts more fans, which means more money, which means the club can afford better players, staff and facilities.

I have a third hypothesis, which is that teams do better in red because on some visceral level they feel they're connected to Bristol City. Teams in blue, on the other hand, feel unnerved at the possibility that other people might confuse them with Rovers. I can certainly imagine feeling both those things, and by the standards of the religious that makes it definitely true. So now you know.