Andres Iniesta's Vissel Kobe and 2020 winners Ulsan Hyundai were among the sides that booked their place in this season's AFC Champions League on Tuesday, after emerging triumphant in the qualifying playoffs.
Japanese side Vissel, who have made a woeful start to 2022 without a win in their first six games of the new J1 League season, were taken to their limit before claiming a 4-3 extra-time triumph over Australia's Melbourne Victory.
Despite Iniesta handing the hosts a 6th-minute lead with a close range finish, a Nicholas D'Agostino double turned the tie on its head -- only for Yuya Osako to grab a brace of his own to put Vissel back in front.
Meanwhile, South Korea's Ulsan -- who were crowned champions of Asia two years ago after beating Persepolis of Iran in the final -- had a far more straightforward outing as they saw off Thai outfit Port 3-0.
On his professional debut, Choi Gi-yun fired Ulsan ahead after 19 minutes but the tie was always in the balance until goals from Um Won-sang and Leonardo in the final seven minutes put the result beyond doubt.
The lineup in the competition's East Zone was completed by Ulsan's compatriots Daegu FC, who defeated Buriram United of Thailand on penalties following a 1-1 draw in game which produced sheer last-gasp drama.
Buriram looked to have snatched the win right at the end of extra-time when Jonathan Bolingi finally broke the deadlock in the 119th minute but Cesinha levelled the scores for Daegu almost immediately with effectively the last meaningful action of the tie before penalties.
Although Buriram would initially have the advantage in the shootout after Bruno Lamas blazed over Daegu's first attempt, costly misses from Suphanat Mueanta, Theerathon Bunmathan and Bolingi would hand the South Koreans their place in the group stage of ACL 2022.