[October 07, 2017] Updated Opening Line by GM Bojan Vučković:
French Defense, Tarrasch Variation – Open System (Chistyakov Defense)

[Line 328 : 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nd2 c5 4. exd5 without 4… exd5]

Move 4… exd5 is covered in our Lines 329-330, while the alternative option 4… Qxd5 (Chistyakov Defense) is the topic of this opening line. In response to 4… Qxd5, move 5. dxc5, usually followed by Ngf3, Bc4 and O-O, is our recommendation for club level players.

The main line goes 4… Qxd5 5. Ngf3 cxd4 6. Bc4 where Black has three interesting options – 6… Qd6, 6… Qd8 and 6… Qd7. After the most frequent choice 6… Qd6, White sometimes opts for 7. Qe2 with the idea to continue with Nb3, Bg5 and O-O-O. More solid is 7. O-O Nf6 8. Nb3 Nc6 9. Nbxd4 Nxd4, where in the endgame occurring after 10. Qxd4 Qxd4 11. Nxd4 Black generally has no difficulties equalizing. More ambitious is 10. Nxd4, where after 10… a6 11. Re1 Qc7 12. Qe2 move 12… h6 (preparing Bd6, while preventing White from playing Bg5) gives Black good prospects.

[Diagram: White to Move] M. Adams – L.-D. Nisipeanu, Sofia 2007. Both white Bishops are under attack, so White needs to make a few concrete moves and ultimately claim a substantial edge. Any thoughts?

Click here to see the line in our viewer…

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