IT was a case of the Lion, the glitch and the wonder goal at Turf Moor as Millwall all but arrested the Clarets play-off charge.
Expectations were high after the fight and spirit shown in defeat at the Madejski Stadium, but the contrast between the two performances was vast.
Kenny Jackett's side showed an attacking intent from the offset, using the driving force of Hamer Bouazza and Andy Keogh to pen the home side in.
And it was the former who almost gave the handful of travelling supporters early cheer, cutting in from the left, beating Ross Wallace on the angle of the penalty area, and striking an effort against the underside of the bar. Only replays will show whether the ball crossed the line before James Henry headed over from the rebound.
Burnley responded but lacked the zip and intricacy to really trouble their opponents. Kieran Trippier and Ross Wallace had the beating of full-back Tony Craig all afternoon, though the end product was lacking, and Keith Treacy pulled a shot wide in the push for an equaliser.
In all fairness the visitors looked sharp on the break, utilising their 4-2-3-1 formation to full effect. But the Clarets didn't help themselves; Ben Mee, the hero at Reading, lost possession when the final man, inviting Harry Kane to surge forward. Kane looked certain to double the lead as he burst in to the area but Marvin Bartley, in for Dean Marney who has become a dad for the first time, tracked back superbly to deflect the effort in to the side-netting.
But the Clarets were punished, on the quarter-of-an-hour mark. Calamitous defending and an unconvincing clearance from David Edgar gifted Keogh space and the striker accepted the invitation, driving in to the roof of the net from close range.
The atmosphere, performance and tempo was flat but that suited Millwall who sat back and played on the break. Then, after the glitch for the opener, came the wonder goal to double the away side's lead.
While his sibling enjoys reality TV success on Towie, Josh Wright, brother of Mark, ensured the only way was up for Millwall as he fizzed a spectacular 20 yard volley beyond Grant. It was the first goal of his career, and he won't score many better.
Bad then turned worse for Howe when captain Chris McCann hobbled off, seemingly struggling with a hamstring strain, and was replaced by Martin Paterson.
After the interval Howe decided to go for the jugular reverting to three at the back as Brian Easton and Danny Ings replaced Treacy and Charlie Austin.
The Clarets enjoyed the lions share of possession, no pun intended, pinning Millwall back mercilessly, but still they failed to test David Forde. Wallace went close on two occasions, both his left-footed efforts floating wide, one via a deflection, while Ings looped an effort beyond Forde but wide of the far post.
And as the Clarets committed more men forward, Millwall prospered. Alan Dunne mounted the attack from right back, eventually finding Henry centrally and the midfielder penetrated the Burnley defence with a slotted pass to Harry Kane who slipped the ball past Grant to make it 3-0.
The only warm point on a cold afternoon came deep in to injury time. Though only a consolation, Shane Lowry's trip on Bartley allowed Jay Rodriguez to score his 19th of the season from the penalty spot.
It was an afternoon to forget for the Clarets, one that almost mirrored the defeat against the same opponents at Turf Moor last season. The Clarets wimpered as the Lions roared and it was they, on the back of a poor run of form that had dragged them in to a Championship dogfight, that deservedly earned maximum points.