Solid Chess Opening Against the Sicilian Defense | Avoid ALL Theories

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In this video lesson, GM Igor Smirnov shares with you a very simple and effective chess opening against the Sicilian Defense for White. The Sicilian Defense begins with the moves 1.e4 c5 and it is the most popular and best-scoring response for Black against White’s first move 1.e4.

Learning the Sicilian Defense requires you to study a bunch of opening theories from different variations including the Najdorf variation, the Dragon variation, the Classical variation, the Scheveningen variation, the Sveshnikov variation, and the list goes on.

If you are someone who finds it difficult to learn all these theories and variations and looking for a simpler opening variation against the Sicilian Defense, you are going to love this. You can play the Moscow variation which happens after the following moves: 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.Bb5+. 

The Moscow variation (also known as the Canal–Sokolsky Attack) is used to avoid opening theory and it gives White a great position, rock-solid pawn structure in the center, and active pieces. Even the world champions Magnus Carlsen and Garry Kasparov have played this variation extensively.

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► Chapters

00:00 Chess Opening Against Sicilian Defense
01:36 Moscow Variation 3.Bb5+ Anti-Sicilian
03:39 Beware of this attacking idea
05:26 White’s active position, Black’s passive
07:18 Stop Black’s plan of advancement
08:59 Black’s plan backfiring
11:18 Can you find the tactics? 

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88 Comments

  1. At 9 minutes. I am sure you have your reasons but I don't quite follow. Before playing the "generic moves" (rooks to the center) you suggested Qd3 to defend the b5 pawn advancement. However with Ne5 black still solidifies/prepares b5 while getting a tempo. Why not just go, say, Qe2 instantly?
    I am sure there are reasons behind this but it felt a bit hand-wavy "and there's really nothing more to do". Is Qd3 serving another purpose/threathening something further when first played? I think Qd2 or Qe2 seems better in that position (connecting rooks, defending b5 without wasting tempo)

  2. Pink bunny? It's ok, but I prefer the cat!
    Err.. I meant to type: Thank you for this video! 🙂

  3. There is a very fun line also in the Sicilian : 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Bc4 Nxe4 6. Qh5. Carlsen tried it in 2020 but somehow blunder inverting the move order of the trap after 6… e6.

  4. This looks absolutely fantastic! I will try this. I always thought White didn't have enough advantage (engine/lichess and master stats) compared to other Anti-Sicilians, but this looks very much like a position my opponents would hate 😂😂👍

  5. Puzzle:
    If I'm not wrong, this is a Sicilian Defence: Dragon Variation. So, my move will be Bh6. intention is to exchange his strong dragon Bishop with my weak Bishop. if he exchange then well. if he doesn't and plays Bh8 then he is in big trouble. My next move will be Ncd5, attacking his undefended queen and Nxe7 checkmate.
    it's 3 months, I'm learning chess and your channel is really helping me out. Thanks 🙏

  6. After 3 months of Playing on liches. my classical rating is 1656. I'm pretty satisfied with this. in classical games I can easily calculate complex tactical idea with enough time in hand but how can a beginner decrease calculation time for Blitz? please give a suggestion. it will be beneficial for many beginners including me. Thanks sir

  7. I owe you a lot for sharing this vodeo😊!

  8. Hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii8iiiiiiiiiiiiiiii8iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiihiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii8iiiii8iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii88i8ii8iiiiihiiiihhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

  9. I will play this Moscow variation against my Ukranian friend.

  10. I am now a 2300 blitz rated lichess player because of your lessons thanks you very much 🇿🇲

  11. I am now a 2300 blitz rated lichess player because of your lessons thanks you very much 🇿🇲

  12. The logo and website link look outdated. You should redo it.

  13. Nd5 Qxd2
    Ne7+ Kh8
    Rxd2
    Les Blancs gagnent 1 pion

  14. Hello Igor, in case black chooses a Taimanov set up what would you recommend? By the way, I fully understood your Moscow variation ideas. Concrete and clear from a pawn structure point of view. George

  15. "This is the video for the people who do not have time to learn whole theory"…
    Bruh. Im meeting my friend in 10 minutes…

  16. Russia and russians are now canceled and dont exist anymore. Please do not play Moscow defence

  17. that political joke omg that was amazingly executed

  18. can you analysis the golden coins game?

  19. I really enjoy Igor's videos. My only mild criticism is that he believes that a player with a small advantage has an easily winning position. At my level, trading a knight for a pawn, or bishop for a rook does not automatically translate into a win. The chances of screwing up later in the game tend to balance out such small advantages, not being a Grandmaster. Overall, though, Igor Smirnov is one of the best chess teachers on the internet.

  20. White is giving up the initiative to black in this set up.😌

  21. For the end puzzle I'm thinking 1. Nd5 Qxd2 {forced} 2. Nxe7+ {The in-between move} Kh8 3. Rxd2 Rfe8 4. Nd5 Nxd5 5. cxd5 Rc8 6. Rcc2 [And what does Black have for the missing pawn?}

  22. 8:20 What about Na4 (enticing b5) or Nd5 (protected), followed by queen-rook fork of Nb6?

  23. I just have one question it is a good opening with black the Sicilienne Grivas,some strong players like this opening,it is a good opening and can you do an video on how this opening can be good for black.Thank you very much.

  24. At 10:24 you move your knight to a4 but what about pawn e5 attacked by theBg7?

  25. Thank you so much, Igor! I am on the way to destroy my sicilian-playing friend. What if they play Nxd7 rather than Qxd7 though?

  26. In 50% of the cases, black doesn't play 2. d6. If so, you're basically out of book if you follow your "system". sorry but this video is clickbait and a waste of time.

  27. After nxe5 ,what if black plays e5?

  28. Unfortunately this variation doesn’t work against the most played old line with 2… Nc6

  29. 1. e4 c5 { B20 Sicilian Defense } 2. d3 d6 3. Nd2 Nf6 4. c3 g6 5. Qc2 Bg7 6. h3 O-O 7. Ngf3 a6 8. Be2 b5 9. a4 a5 10. g4 b4 11. Nf1 bxc3 12. bxc3 Ba6 13. Ng3 Nc6 14. g5 Ne8 15. h4 f6 16. Qa2+ Kh8 17. h5 fxg5 18. hxg6 h6 19. Nxg5 e5 20. Nf7+ Rxf7 21. Bxh6 Bxh6 22. Qxf7 Nf6 23. Rxh6+ { Black resigns. } 1-0

  30. What if my opponent doesn't block the check with the bishop, but rather with their knight, do i still take the knight with my bishop?

  31. The guy took with the night and not the queen. 😕

  32. 2:21 the Maroczy bind!!! I have been using that in my Scotch games, so really happy to see there's applicability against the stubborn sicilian!

  33. knightd5 gains a pawn on ke7+, after the black Queen moves or takes our Queen.

  34. Nd5 wins a pawn after QxQ No p e7 then B x Q

  35. I ain't playing moscow variation 😆

  36. What if he does not eat with the queen but rather with the knight on d7? this changes everything

  37. I see so many openings that until lately I had know idea what they were, so couldn't search for a defense. I'm not winning much (yet), but I'm learning and reading the board better. THANK YOU!!

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