ASEAN challengers have a night to forget in AFC Champions League

Having seen his side lose 4-1 to Pohang Steelers two days earlier, conceding three penalties in the process, Johor Darul Ta'zim coach Benjamin Mora vowed to rectify the defensive mistakes and make improvements for the rematch.

However, there was no redemption in sight for the Southern Tigers on Thursday as Pohang did the double over them with a 2-0 win at the Rajamangala National Stadium in Bangkok, as JDT's third consecutive season in the AFC Champions League ended once again in disappointment and no place in the knockout stages.

A quickfire first-half double from Lee Seung-mo and Kang Sang-woo shortly gave Pohang a lead they would never relinquish, as the Malaysia Super League champions offered little in attack on their way to a demoralising defeat - one which ends their hopes of reaching the Round of 16.

Johor weren't the only side from Southeast Asia to endure a night to forget as Ratchaburi Mitr Phol and Tampines Rovers were also condemned to heavy defeats, although Chiangrai United did give a better account of themselves as they held on for a point against Gamba Osaka.

Nagoya win sends Ratchaburi, JDT packing

In the same group as JDT, Thai League 1 outfit Ratchaburi had their fate sealed as well following a 3-0 defeat to Nagoya Grampus.

Needing a win to keep both their and Johor's chances alive, Ratchaburi head coach Sek-San Siripong made seven changes from their previous game and fielded an all-Thai XI, dropping the likes of Junior Mapuku, Steeven Langil and Sebastien Wuthrich to the bench.

Narakorn Noomchansakool and Praweenwat Boonyong created chances for the Dragons in the first half and the debutants did manage to keep the Japanese side at bay till the break -- courtesy of some good goalkeeping from Kampol Pathommakkakul.

Mateus eventually found a way past Kampol five minutes into the restart before strikes from Yoichiro Kakitani and Ryogo Yamasaki assured the J1 League side a place in the top two alongside Pohang and condemned the Thai side to their fourth consecutive defeat in ACL

Ratchaburi, who are yet to score a goal or claim a point in the competition, will next face Pohang in two days' time, while JDT take on Nagoya in the other fixture the same day. The two ASEAN sides will then meet on the final matchday on July 7 hoping to wrap up their continental campaign on a high at each other's expense.

Jeonbuk take debutants Tampines to the cleaners

For Singapore's Tampines Rovers, it might have felt like a very long 90 minutes at the Lokomotiv Stadium in Tashkent as they suffered the biggest defeat by any team in the group stages of this season's ACL so far.

The Singapore Premier League runners-up had shown they could go toe-to-toe against the likes of Gamba and Chiangrai in the opening rounds despite ultimately suffering defeat. Their clash against K League 1 champions Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors on Thursday proved to be a huge mismatch.

Modou Barrow and Gustavo both bagged hat-tricks -- the latter even netting four -- while Kim Seung-dae and Stanislav Iljutcenko also found the back of the net against the Stags in a 9-0 win -- their biggest in the tournament.

For Tampines, things are not getting any easier as they face their tormentors again on July 4 in the reverse fixture, with coach Gavin Lee having his work cut out to keep his players motivated and focused following Thursday's crushing loss.

Chiangrai rescue some pride for Southeast Asia

Former Thai League 1 champions Chiangrai at least salvaged some pride for the ASEAN contenders as they held Gamba to a 1-1 draw at the Milliy Stadium.

Leandro Pereira had given the Japanese side the lead two minutes after the restart, but Bill equalised with virtually the last kick of the game in the 94th minute to keep the Thai side in the running for a place in the Round of 16.

While Jeonbuk top the group with seven points after the completion of three sets of fixtures, Gamba are second with five points followed by Chiangrai with four. Tampines are yet to open their account in their debut campaign.

Chiangrai will once again face Gamba in their next match knowing that a win will help them leapfrog the J1 League side to second place in Group H.