[December 04, 2018] Updated Opening Line by Bojan Vučković:
French Defense, Advance Variation

[Line 323 : 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. e5]

Though Black has a couple of options at his disposal, move 3… c5 is the most common choice. After 4. c3, continuation 4… Qb6 5. Nf3 Bd7, with the idea Bd7-b5, is our recommendation for club level players.

The game usually goes 3… c5 4. c3 Nc6 5. Nf3, where moves 5… Bd7 (Line 324) and 5… Qb6 are of about the same strength. Against the latter option, 6. a3, 6. Be2 and 6. Na3 are frequently seen, and in any case with complex strategical battles.

The alternatives 4… Nh6 and 4… Nge7 are more promising for White, for example 4… Nh6 5. Bd3 cxd4 6. Bxh6 gxh6 7. cxd4 and 4… Nge7 5. Na3 cxd4 6. cxd4 Nf5 7. Nc2, with a small edge.

[Diagram: White to Move] F. Caruana – F. Vallejo Pons, Sao Paolo/Bilbao 2012. Black has just sacrificed a Knight on b4, and wants to make pressure on the pinned c3-Knight. How should White continue to get a strong initiative?

Click here to see the line in our viewer…

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