X Factor winner Ben Haenow looking likely to score the Christmas number one

The X Factor winner Ben Haenow has taken the lead in the race for the Christmas number one, but rivals could still have a chance with streaming data set to give them a boost.

The Croydon van driver has achieved 75,000 sales up to midnight last night after his track Something I Need was made available on Sunday evening following his win.

However current number one, Uptown Funk by Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars, is only 23,000 copies behind the leader and with online listening through streaming sites expected to build, the gap could close as the songs chase the number one position on the Official Singles Chart.

Ben’s sales are way ahead of those for 2013 winner Sam Bailey, who had clocked up 45,000 sales by this stage in the race.

Streaming is being included in the Christmas race for the first time this year from services such as Spotify and Deezer. Uptown Funk was played online 1.35 million times last week in the UK adding the equivalent of 13,500 sales, and chart bosses say that the figure is expected to be higher this week.

A CD version of the X Factor single will be released tomorrow (December 17).

Early sales predictions posted at OfficialCharts.com suggest that Ed Sheeran’s single Thinking Out Loud would be number three if current sales patterns continue, while Up by Olly Murs and Demi Lovato is on course to be number four.

A new charity version of The Farm single All Together Now was released yesterday by Peace Collective hoping to beat The X Factor to the top slot, although it is currently outside the top 40. They were hoping to repeat the success of a previous effort by many of the figures behind the song who beat 2012 X Factor winner James Arthur to the Christmas number one under the name Justice Collective.

Official Charts Company chief executive Martin Talbot said: “The week of the Christmas Number 1 race is always among the most exciting in the Official Singles Chart calendar – and early data indicates that we have a genuine battle on our hands in 2014. By Sunday, we will know who has won out – but, for the moment, the race is on.”

Chart bosses say Tuesday’s ‘sales flash’ is based on preliminary figures and does not take account of all sales, and a more rounded picture will be released when the midweek charts are released tomorrow.