Top-Level Catalan Repertoire for White - Part 1
We are happy to inform you that GM Ivan Cheparinov is starting his next project - Catalan Opening for White. Being a huge Catalan expert himself, Cheparinov shares his cutting edge Catalan repertoire in two-part series.
The starting position of both databases arises after 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 d5 4.g3
This is the starting position of the Catalan. The current database focuses mainly on the lines starting with 4...dxc4 which are extremely important. Cheparinov also deals with Black's rare options on move 4. The main moves 4...Be7 followed by 5...0-0 and 4...Bb4+ will be analyzed in Part 2.
True to his analytical approach, Cheparinov always goes for ambitious and challenging continuations. Even though some of his recommendations are less explored, they create a lot of practical problems for the opponent.
The database consists of 13 theoretical chapters, 15 interactive test positions, a Memory Booster, and a Video Version (6.5+ Hours Running Time).
In this short overview, we would like to pay attention at Cheparinov's recommendations against some of the critical lines that Black can choose.
In Chapter 9, the author covers the variation 4...dxc4 5.Bg2 c5 6.0-0 Nc6
This position is extremely popular at the grandmaster level. The variation is considered to be very solid. Cheparinov shows that in the line 7.Qa4 Bd7 8.Qxc4 b5 9.Qd3 Black cannot achieve full equality.
Another very topical position arises after 4...dxc4 5.Bg2 Bb4+ 6.Bd2
Now, Black's main move is 6...a5. In Chapter 10, Cheparinov proves that after 6...c5 7.Bxc4 cxb4 8.Ne5, White enjoys a lasting pressure.
Let's return to 6...a5 to which White responds with 7.Qc2.
A safe option and well suited to play for a small advantage. Black is at crossroads here. Cheparinov analyzes 5 different moves for Black at this point. The main line goes 7...Bxd2 8.Qxd2 c6 9.a4 b5 (the popular 9...Ne4 is dealt with as well) 10.Na3!?
It turn out that this rare move creates more problems than the traditional 10.axb5. Deep analysis shows that Black fails to achieve complete equality.
A very serious option for Black is 4...dxc4 5.Bg2 a6
Besides preparing ...b7-b5, this flexible move also makes ...Nc6 more favourable. After 6.0-0, Black has choice between 6...b5 and the main line 6...Nc6.
Chapter 12 is dedicated to the position arising after 6...b5 7.Ne5
Depending on what Black will play, White will undemine the queenside structure by playing either a2-a4 or b2-b3. Practice and analysis show that White enjoys more than sufficient compensation for the pawn.
The last Chapter 13 features the main line starting with 6...Nc6.
In this position, Cheparinov suggests 7.a4 preventing ...b7-b5 and planning to regain the pawn. Deep analysis shows that Black faces practical problems in this line.
FREE VIDEO LECTURE