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The Albin Counter-Gambit Repetoire
Compiled by builttospill
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Getting the most out of an aggressive opening for black. I've done my research, and tested these ideas thoroughly with engines, so you can rest assured there are some good ideas here. Here I explore the options against white's 3 main ideas on the critical move 5. They are as follows:

The kingside fianchetto: 5. g3

The queenside fianchetto. 5. a3 with an upcoming b4, Bb2

The quick development with 5. Nd2

Personally, I think 5. g3 is most common for white, so the first game I'll look at goes down that line. and plays the opening exactly how I'd recommend.

The ideas for black are generally to get rapid development and active piece play in compensation for going down material, though sometimes white will give back the gambited pawn for a more comfortable position.

Another theme for black is to play a well timed f6 to get the Knight out early and get play on the F file. Generally I play that way, except in lines where black can take back on e5 fairly easily and not fall behind in development.

There is a line in Gelfand-Radjabov, 2008, where I think giving up the D pawn is less than ideal, so I would rather gambit the pawn on f6 to keep the D pawn on the board. That's another instance where f6 is a good idea.

An idea advocated by Rudolph Spielman was to play d3 when white's position is cramped. For example, in Sakaev-Nabaty, 2010, black plays 8. d3, effectively forcing e3, and that gives the LSB a good home on g4, pinning the knight.

An early Qe7 is another move I believe is best for black in the lines where white plays Nd2. It looks strange because it blocks in the DSB, but it threatens the recapture on e5 and allows for a fast queenside castle, where black gains king safety and protects the D pawn where it might come under fire in some lines. More times than not, it makes sense to castle queenside in the Albin. Whites has lines that simplify a bit earlier with Qe7, but I think it's an even game when that happens, and the player with the better endgame skill will win.


R Gomez Camacho vs P Heimbaecher, 2001 
(D09) Queen's Gambit Declined, Albin Counter Gambit, 5.g3, 32 moves, 1-0

Here I like 8. f6 for black
Gelfand vs Radjabov, 2008 
(D08) Queen's Gambit Declined, Albin Counter Gambit, 24 moves, 1/2-1/2

After 7. Nxe5 white has a slight advantage
Dudkin vs N Sorokin, 1967 
(D08) Queen's Gambit Declined, Albin Counter Gambit, 7 moves, 0-1

Good chances for black with 11. g5, with the ideas Nd7 and Bg7
Sakaev vs T Nabaty, 2010 
(D08) Queen's Gambit Declined, Albin Counter Gambit, 54 moves, 1-0

Nicely played by the champ. 7... f6 could be even better
A Niemela vs Spassky, 1959 
(D08) Queen's Gambit Declined, Albin Counter Gambit, 43 moves, 0-1

Team White vs Team Black, 2012 
(D08) Queen's Gambit Declined, Albin Counter Gambit, 40 moves, 1/2-1/2

6 games

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