For many years I have been playing 1.e4 e5 with Black and, like for many other players, I always had some doubts what to play against the Italian (2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4) as in many lines play might become a bit dry because of the ensuing symmetrical pawnstructure and the lack of open files.
When I decided to have a closer look at this opening from Black's perspective with the aim to build a sharp repertoire I decided that 3...Nf6 is the way to go. After having spent hours of analyzing the main consequences I felt it's worth sharing my ideas in my ChessBase DVD: '' A Black Repertoire against the Two Knights''
One of the pillars of the Black repertoire is meeting 4.Ng5 with the amazing move 4...Bc5, the so-called Traxler Variation, basically forcing White accepting the gambit. I have always been very excited about ignoring the threat on f7 by bringing out another piece, but unfortunately I hardly have got the chance showing my knowledge in practice, as almost anybody has opted for the quieter lines initiated with 4.d3 (which has been covered in my DVD as well.
Today I finally got the opportunity playing one of the main variations within the Traxler in a blitz game on the server. Having a few ideas in mind gives you so much confidence and joy playing this variation. My opponent wasn't aware of all the subtleties and quickly went downhill. Hope you enjoy the game!