French Defence, Labourdonnais Variation [2]


1.e4 e6 2.f4


In my previous blog on the French Labourdonnais Variation I was very enthusiastic about this opening, playing 2.f4 (after 1.e4 e6). So the next time I had the chance, I would play it again. Luckily I didn't have to wait long.



The complete text of the game analysis:

1.e4 e6 2.f4 d5 3.Nf3

Don't mind what theory or computers tell you, but 3.e5 isn't much as fun as 3.Nf3. Furthermore your opponent can't play the French he/she is used to.

3...dxe4 4.Ng5

Personally I like this move better than 4.Ne5. After this the game could continue as 4...Nf6 5.Bc4 Bc5 6.c3 0-0 7.d4 exd3 8.Nxd3 Bb6 (White has problems to develop) or 4...Nd7 5.Nc3 Nxe5 6.fxe5 Qd4 7.Qg4 Qxe5 8.Qxe4 Qxe4+ 9.Nxe4 (white has no compensation for his pawn).


Black wants to hold on to his (extra) pawn.


An alternative is: 5.Bc4 Qf6 6.d3 h6 7.Nh3 exd3 8.Qxd3 Bc5 9.Nc3 Nc6


The purpose of whites last move, making it difficult for the black Knight on b8 to develop.

6.Bc4 Qf6 7.d3

Attacking blacks pawn on e4, after black takes on d3 the square f3 will come available for the Knight on g5.


An alternative is 7...h6 8.Nh3 exd3 9.Qxd3 Bc5 10.Nc3.

8.Bb3 exd3

Better was 8...a5 or 8...h6 and then take on d3.


At this point white has good compensation for the pawn, I think.


One move too late. Now the white Knight can safely go back to f3 and taking control over square e5.

10.Nf3 Bc5 11.Nc3

I had the idea of playing Nc3, Be3 and 0-0-0. All my pieces are developed and ready to attack. Maybe Ne5, Nd2 and Ndf3 was a good and perhaps a better alternative.


Not a good move. Better was 11...a5 (a logical move after black played already b5 to trap whites LSB) 12.a4 b4 13.Ne2 Ba6, but perhaps white could play 12.Ne5 instead: 12...a4 13.Nxb5 cxb5 14.Qxb5+ Nd7 15.Bxa4.

12.Be3 Ba7

Again not good. Better was 12...Bxe3.


Whites pieces are ready to attack and whites King is safe. Black hasn't develop his pieces yet; furthermore blacks King is standing vulnerable at e8. White is clearly better!


If 13...Ne7 14.Qd8+ Kf7 15.Ne5!


Not that it's a bad move, but maybe white better had played: 14.Bxe6 Qxe6 15.Bxa7 Qf6 16.Rhe1+ Ne7 17.Bc5 Nxc5 18.Qd8+ Kf7 19.Qxh8 Bb7 20.Qh7 or 14...Bxe3+ 15.Qxe3 Ne7 16.Rd6 Qf8 17.Rhd1 and white wins the game.

14...Rxa7 15.Qd6 

Perhaps 15.Bxe6 or 15.Qe3 (threatening the black Rook on a7 and the pawn on e6) was somewhat better.


Bad move! Whites pieces keep pressuring and it's only a matter of time when black surrenders. Better was trading the Queens: 15...Qe7 16.Bxe6 Qxd6 17.Rxd6.

16.Rhe1 Nf8

Black tries to guard the e6-pawn, but it's no use.


Black resigns.


Another interesting game with the French, Labourdonnais Variation. Hopefully more will follow. Also read my other blog on this Variation. 

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