Blackpool suffered their fourth defeat on the bounce despite a spirited performance against Burnley.
A stunning strike from Burnley’s Scott Arfield gave the Clarets all three points in the Lancashire derby as they won 2-1 at Turf Moor.
Arfield delivered a superlative curling effort into the far corner after Clarets top-scorer Danny Ings had continued his fine form by snatching his 17th goal of the season to put his side in front early on.
But Blackpool were never out of the reckoning and Craig Cathcart levelled the scores with a header before Arfield raised the roof by ensuring Burnley occupied the Championship’s top spot at Christmas.
Blackpool’s Jack Robinson got in an important block to deny Arfield’s far-post volley early on.
But Ings opened the scoring from the resulting seventh-minute corner, slotting the ball past Matt Gilks from 12 yards after David Jones rolled an intelligent ball across the Seasiders’ penalty area.
Jason Shackell’s last-ditch tackle denied Thomas Ince from scoring a terrific solo goal after his skill took him beyond three Burnley players as he waltzed into the penalty area.
Blackpool then missed a golden chance to equalise when Ince teed up Steven Dobbie, who steered his shot well wide with plenty of time to do better.
But Cathcart levelled for the visitors on 24 minutes when he rose to meet an Ince corner, with Tom Heaton just failing to keep the ball from crossing the line.
Heaton then made a stunning one-handed save to deny Dan Gosling, whose curling shot looked destined for the far corner.
Heaton did the same again from Steven Davies’ long-range effort before Sam Vokes fired a strike inches wide at the other end.
And Gilks kept out Vokes’ header superbly when Kightly’s cross beat the Blackpool defence.
But Arfield scored a contender for goal of the season when his sublime curling strike from the edge of the box left the Blackpool goalkeeper rooted to the spot and nestled in the far corner just two minutes into the second half.
Another Arfield effort came back off the angle as Burnley pressed for a third before Neal Bishop skied his attempt over the Clarets’ crossbar with Blackpool refusing to lie down.
Gosling then saw a shot blocked for the Seasiders following a surging run down the left-hand side.
But Arfield was instrumental again when he delivered a pin-point cross to Ings, who watched his header shave the upright with Gilks beaten.
Vokes then forced Gilks to beat away his venomous drive as his side looked to avoid a nervy finish.
Neither side managed to add to their tally for the afternoon however, leaving Burnley manager Sean Dyche sitting pretty at the Championship summit as Paul Ince’s men continue to slip away from the play-off places.