Match ends, Burnley 1, Barnsley 0.
Michael Kightly struck his first goal of the season as Burnley beat Barnsley to take top spot in the Championship.
The former Wolves striker struck from inside the area in the second half, ensuring Barnsley stay bottom.
Burnley's Sam Vokes had an effort saved and fired over early on, before Paddy McCourt shot over for the visitors.
Barnsley, who still have Micky Mellon in caretaker charge, almost snatched a point but Tomasz Cywka's free-kick late on was saved by Tom Heaton.
Burnley went into the game in third spot, despite being without a win in five matches.
Four draws in that period had seen their promotion push temporarily stutter, but Sean Dyche was able to recall top scorer Danny Ings from injury.
After winning at Brighton in midweek, just days after the sacking of David Flitcroft, Barnsley travelled west with fresh optimism, but they were soon under pressure.
Vokes latched onto skipper Jason Shackell's long ball to draw a save from Jack Butland, before going close again seconds later when his volley narrowly cleared the crossbar.
But the visitors grew into the game and went close in the 20th minute when striker Marcus Tudgay played a perfectly weighted through-ball to Cywka, who was denied by the legs of Heaton.
Ings fired acrobatically over early in the second period as the home side built up a sustained period of pressure which proved telling.
Former Barnsley loanee Kieran Trippier played a neat pass to the recalled Kightly, who drove confidently past Butland into the roof of the net from 16 yards. It was Kightly's first goal since scoring for Stoke in their Premier League defeat by Aston Villa in April.
Cywka cracked a free-kick from 35 yards late on which appeared destined for the top corner, only for Heaton to produce a smart fingertip save to ensure Burnley moved top, level on points with Queens Park Rangers and a point clear of Leicester City.
Burnley manager Sean Dyche:
"I've read this week that we've been going through a mini-slump. Well, we've dropped from the top to third place, and then back to the top, I hardly see that as a crisis.
"It was a marvellous moment of quality that won the game for us. It was a fantastic goal from Michael.
"On our day we can match anyone in this division. We just needed to work out a way to win the second half, and we got there in the end."
Barnsley caretaker manager Micky Mellon:
"I've not been told anything by the board. I don't know whether I'll still be here tomorrow, never mind being in change for the Yeovil game next weekend.
"It's been a difficult period, but the players have shown that they are up for the fight and we had a right good go."
- 22StockSubstituted forEdgarat 76'minutes
- 19KightlySubstituted forStanislasat 86'minutesBooked at 90mins
- 23EtuhuSubstituted forScotlandat 69'minutes
- 50TudgayBooked at 55mins
- 19CywkaSubstituted forO'Brienat 76'minutes
- 42McCourtSubstituted forPedersenat 83'minutes
- James Adcock
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Burnley 1, Barnsley 0.
Junior Stanislas (Burnley) is shown the yellow card.
Attempt missed. Danny Ings (Burnley) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.
Corner, Burnley. Conceded by Scott Wiseman.
Corner, Barnsley. Conceded by Ben Mee.
Attempt blocked. Jason Scotland (Barnsley) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Jacob Mellis.
Attempt missed. Sam Vokes (Burnley) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Kieran Trippier following a set piece situation.
Foul by Jim O'Brien (Barnsley).
Sam Vokes (Burnley) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
David Perkins (Barnsley) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by David Edgar (Burnley).
Substitution, Burnley. Junior Stanislas replaces Michael Kightly.
Attempt missed. Jacob Mellis (Barnsley) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Peter Ramage.
Attempt blocked. Marcus Tudgay (Barnsley) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Thomas Kennedy with a cross.
Corner, Barnsley. Conceded by Kieran Trippier.
Attempt blocked. Jason Scotland (Barnsley) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Jacob Mellis.
Substitution, Barnsley. Marcus Pedersen replaces Patrick McCourt.
Corner, Barnsley. Conceded by Ben Mee.
Attempt saved. Scott Arfield (Burnley) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.