Alberto Chueca, FIDE Trainer & International Master 
Italian Game
Was it interesting? Share it to help!
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  

Italian Game

Italian Game is a strong, interesting, and easy to play and learn Opening for White. That is why it is very often recommended for beginners. At the same time, great masters play it very frequently in the Elite. In this post, we will analyze some theory, main plans, pawn structures, and typical squares for pieces.

1.e4 e5 2Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4

This is the basic position, White’s light squares Bishop is developed to c4, which is a very active square, targeting f7.

Some theory and ideas         

At this point, Black has two main options:

  • 3. … Nf6 Two Knights Defense

This development move has the drawback that blocks the black Queen, so White has the possibility to play very aggressively with 4.Ng5.

The line should continue like this:

  1. … d5 5. exd5 Na5 6. Bb5+

White will have a pawn up in the middlegame, but in general Black could have some acceptable compensation for it.

  • 3. … Bc5 Giuoco Piano

This move is probably a little easier to play for Black. Notice that now White cannot play Ng5, because the Queen is controlling that square.

Here White can play the interesting Evans Gambit 4. b4!?, but actually the mainline continues with 4. c3 (this move is very strong, it is dominating black Knight so it cannot jump ahead, and also preparing some d4).

4. … Nf6

And here two interesting options (one more time the annoying 5.Ng5 does not make sense, because Black can just castle and protect f7 with King and Rook):

  • 5.d4 exd4 6. cxd4 (6.e5 is also possible, although probably not better than cxd4) Bb4+ 7. Bd2 (7.Nc3 is also playable, with a middlegame a little more complicated)
  • 5.d3 Giuoco Pianissimo, this is the mainline we will focus on.

Giuoco Pianissimo means very slow, which is exactly what should happen in the middlegame because both sides will slowly maneuver and try to improve their pieces. This is one of the main lines:

  1. … d6 6.0-0 0-0 7.Nbd2 a6 (typical move, clearing a7 for the Bishop)

8.Bb3 Black was threatening some ideas with Na5, and white Bishop cannot escape now to b5, which means that the powerful light squares Bishop could be traded for the Knight. That is why in general, White needs to play Bb3 after a6. This is an important subtlety in this system.

Typical Pawn Structures in Italian Game 

White: a2, b2, c3, d3, e3, e4, g2, h3

Black: a6, b7, c7, d6, e5, f7, g7, h6

This happens very often, because of the trade of bishops on e3. One of the main worries for beginners playing as White in this typical pawn structure in Italian Game is the doubled pawns on the “e” file. However, I have great news here :), there is nothing wrong with them.

This small problem is perfectly compensated because White is getting a very strong control of central squares (the pawn on e3 now controls d4 and f4, which is great) and also the “f” file is now half-open, so the Rook on f1 is much more active.

Typical Plans 

In Giuoco Pianissimo, White needs to solve the problem of the development of the Queenside Knight, because “c3” square is now blocked by the pawn and on d2 the Knight will be also blocking the Bishop. So, a very common plan is to bring this Knight to the Kingside, by playing Nd2-f1-g3. Sometimes also e3 is fine, thinking about some possibilities over d5 or c4.

The plans are very slow here, but the position is actually interesting. White could try some advance over d4 once all pieces are ready for this break. Also, the “f5” square is always going to be very comfortable for white Knights, so, ideas like Nh4-f5 are also fine here.

By the way, White needs to be careful when they play Nh4 because this piece will be unprotected, so, there could be some tactic idea related to that Knight, as a capture on e4 (Nxe4) discovering the black Queen. In general, the move Nh4 will work, but it is important not to forget to think about possible tactics from the second player because in some positions it could be winning material for Black.

We should say that a very strong plan for Black is to bring the Queenside Knight to the Kingside. Remember this Knight is dominated by the white pawn on c3, so the maneuver Nc6-e7-g6 is pretty interesting. Sometimes this Knight could also jump to f4.

Typical squares for white pieces in Italian Game

King: It takes some moves to develop pieces in the Queenside, so, almost always White castles Kingside.

Queen: A typical square for the Queen in this line is e2. The idea is to clear d1 for the Rook, and also move the Queen out of the “d” file, which is very likely to be open at some point in the middlegame when Black plays d5 or White plays d4, which are both typical breaks in these positions.

Rooks: The Queenside Rook frequently goes to d1. The one from the Kingside could go to e1, protecting the central pawn. However, if there is a minor piece trade on e3, and the “f” file is finally half-open, then this piece is clearly better on f1.

Bishops: Light squares Bishop very often goes back to b3, avoiding to be traded by a Knight. If there is some threat, this piece can also go to c2, where it is really safe, it protects the center, and it is ready to target h7 if the diagonal is finally open. The dark squares Bishop goes almost always to e3, where it can be perfectly traded by the annoying black Bishop. We are assuming Black plays h6 at some point; otherwise, the pin with Bg5 could be really annoying for the second player.

Knights: The Kingside Knight can go from f3 to h4-f5. The Queenside Knight will use the path d2-f1-g3 or e3, also looking at f5, d5, or c4. Sometimes White can even do this plan of Nf1-e3 or g3 before castling and it is fine as well.

Click to rate this post!
[Total: 0 Average: 0]

Do you want to know more about “The Rebel Alliance”?

Discover how to put your chess to other level!

This is what I’ve got for you:

The best chess classes to progress as soon as possible to the next level, easily and without complications.

A clear way and methodology. You will know where you are and where we are going to reach.

A chess platform though to teach chess and a big group of rebels to progress together!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

IM Alberto Chueca

Become a better player

Are you a new visitor?

GET THE APP

chess app

Instagram: Follow me!

“I have found the mental training and discipline involved in the game of chess to be very applicable to the real estate investing process. The methodical thought process, deep thinking and end game orientation required in chess are parallel to the analysis, negotiation and contract work involved with real estate investing. I believe chess is excellent mental conditioning for the real estate game or any business endeavour.”

Chuck Gargotto, Real Estate Agent/Investor

Prepare little great chess players to be grown successful people 🔝🏅

DM for more info!

#AlbertoChueca #TheRebelAlliance #chesscoach #chesscoaching #chess #chessboard #chessgame #chessmoves #chessmaster #chessplayer #chesspiece #chessclub #chesslover #chesslife #chesspuzzle #chesstournament #chesslessons #chessgames
...

18 0

“If a ruler does not understand chess, how can he rule over a kingdom?”

Sassanian King of Kings, Khusros II (Ruled Persia from 590-628 A.D.)

#AlbertoChueca #TheRebelAlliance #chesscoach #chesscoaching #chess #chessboard #chessgame #chessmoves #chessmaster #chessplayer #chesspiece #chessclub #chesslover #chesslife #chesspuzzle #chesstournament #chesslessons #chessgames
...

29 0

“I started playing chess when I was about 4 or 5 years old. It is very good for children to learn to play chess, because it helps them to develop their mental abilities. It also helps to consolidate a person’s character, because as it happens both in life and in a chess game we have to make decisions constantly. In chess there is no luck and no excuses: everything is in your hands.”

Vladimir Kramnik, World Chess Champion

It can be said louder, but not any clearer 🏅🔝

IF you want your kids to learn this amazing game, go to www.albertochueca.comm or DM me for more info!

#AlbertoChueca #TheRebelAlliance #chesscoach #chesscoaching #chess #chessboard #chessgame #chessmoves #chessmaster #chessplayer #chesspiece #chessclub #chesslover #chesslife #chesspuzzle #chesstournament #chesslessons #chessgames
...

36 0

ARE YOU UP TO THE CHALLENGE?💪

Regular chess players seek for easy wins. Great chess players are not afraid of going with another amazing players.

Because easy battles don't teach you anything. You cannot learn anything new if you do the same things over and over.

You need to challenge yourself in order to become a GREAT chess player. And that is what we do best in The Academy.

Check out our training and begin your way to success!🏅
👉Go to www.albertochueca.com

#AlbertoChueca #TheRebelAlliance #chesscoach #chesscoaching #chess #chessboard #chessgame #chessmoves #chessmaster #chessplayer #chesspiece #chessclub #chesslover #chesslife #chesspuzzle #chesstournament #chesslessons #chessgames
...

19 0

𝟏 𝐨𝐧 𝟏 𝐜𝐡𝐞𝐬𝐬 𝐥𝐞𝐬𝐬𝐨𝐧𝐬

I will work only with you, 1 on 1. I will use my time to help you to progress in chess through private chess lessons.

🔸Firstly, you get me as a personal coach. Chess lessons in English or Spanish.
🔸Secondly, I will give all the knowledge I have gathered from my long-time experience and I will focus strongly on your improvement.
🔸We will work specifically on your mistakes.
🔸Book the chess lessons whenever you want! Booking is done through a calendar. A very convenient process!
🔸You will have my contact information on hand and I will answer your queries promptly
🔸In addition, if you can’t attend the chess lessons, reschedule it! You won’t lose money if you reschedule it.

More Info: https://www.albertochueca.com/pricing/

#AlbertoChueca #TheRebelAlliance #chesscoach #chesscoaching #chess #chessboard #chessgame #chessmoves #chessmaster #chessplayer #chesspiece #chessclub #chesslover #chesslife #chesspuzzle #chesstournament #chesslessons #chessgames
...

16 0

CHESS IS LIFE IN MINIATURE✨

We talked so many times about how chess makes your everyday life easier. It helps you think faster, reassess, and adapt your strategy to what is actually happening.

You cannot win the game if you're completely fixated on the one strategy that you chose to play, because your opponent, regardless of how amazing and good your strategy is, is paying attention to both your moves and their own moves.

In both life and chess, we need to accept what's happening and act accordingly.

Otherwise, by the time you actually look around you, you'll see you are completely lost and with a plan that's no longer viable.

Learn how to play chess with us and notice the improvement in your everyday life.

#AlbertoChueca #TheRebelAlliance #chesscoach #chesscoaching #chess #chessboard #chessgame #chessmoves #chessmaster #chessplayer #chesspiece #chessclub #chesslover #chesslife #chesspuzzle #chesstournament #chesslessons #chessgames
...

21 0

𝐍𝐨𝐰 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐜𝐚𝐧 𝐥𝐞𝐚𝐫𝐧 𝐜𝐡𝐞𝐬𝐬 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡 𝐚 𝐠𝐨𝐨𝐝 𝐦𝐞𝐭𝐡𝐨𝐝𝐨𝐥𝐨𝐠𝐲 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐚 𝐠𝐨𝐨𝐝 𝐭𝐞𝐜𝐡𝐧𝐨𝐥𝐨𝐠𝐲!

🔸Extremely practical teaching with a very refined methodology.
🔸2 Masterclasses and 1 Online Tournament every month. According to your level of knowledge on the topics you need to move forward on.
🔸Access to recorded chess lessons, so you don’t miss anything!
🔸Access to the training area where you will have assignments weekly to keep you active!
🔸You will join the private academy, with new videos uploaded every month.
🔸Tutorials, free chess ebooks…
🔸Personal support by email for your chess questions and concerns.

𝐀𝐫𝐞 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐝𝐲 𝐭𝐨 𝐣𝐨𝐢𝐧⁉
👉 https://www.albertochueca.com/pricing/
.
.
.
.
.
#AlbertoChueca #TheRebelAlliance #chesscoach #chesscoaching #chess #chessboard #chessgame #chessmoves #chessmaster #chessplayer #chesspiece #chessclub #chesslover #chesslife #chesspuzzle #chesstournament #chesslessons #chessgames
...

6 0

𝐍𝐨𝐰 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐜𝐚𝐧 𝐥𝐞𝐚𝐫𝐧 𝐜𝐡𝐞𝐬𝐬 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡 𝐚 𝐠𝐨𝐨𝐝 𝐦𝐞𝐭𝐡𝐨𝐝𝐨𝐥𝐨𝐠𝐲 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐚 𝐠𝐨𝐨𝐝 𝐭𝐞𝐜𝐡𝐧𝐨𝐥𝐨𝐠𝐲!

🔸Extremely practical teaching with a very refined methodology.
🔸2 Masterclasses and 1 Online Tournament every month. According to your level of knowledge on the topics you need to move forward on.
🔸Access to recorded chess lessons, so you don’t miss anything!
🔸Access to the training area where you will have assignments weekly to keep you active!
🔸You will join the private academy, with new videos uploaded every month.
🔸Tutorials, free chess ebooks…
🔸Personal support by email for your chess questions and concerns.

𝐀𝐫𝐞 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐝𝐲 𝐭𝐨 𝐣𝐨𝐢𝐧⁉
👉 https://www.albertochueca.com/pricing/
.
.
.
.
.
#AlbertoChueca #TheRebelAlliance #chesscoach #chesscoaching #chess #chessboard #chessgame #chessmoves #chessmaster #chessplayer #chesspiece #chessclub #chesslover #chesslife #chesspuzzle #chesstournament #chesslessons #chessgames
...

11 0

𝐍𝐨𝐰 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐜𝐚𝐧 𝐥𝐞𝐚𝐫𝐧 𝐜𝐡𝐞𝐬𝐬 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡 𝐚 𝐠𝐨𝐨𝐝 𝐦𝐞𝐭𝐡𝐨𝐝𝐨𝐥𝐨𝐠𝐲 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐚 𝐠𝐨𝐨𝐝 𝐭𝐞𝐜𝐡𝐧𝐨𝐥𝐨𝐠𝐲!

🔸Extremely practical teaching with a very refined methodology.
🔸2 Masterclasses and 1 Online Tournament every month. According to your level of knowledge on the topics you need to move forward on.
🔸Access to recorded chess lessons, so you don’t miss anything!
🔸Access to the training area where you will have assignments weekly to keep you active!
🔸You will join the private academy, with new videos uploaded every month.

🔸Tutorials, free chess ebooks…
🔸Personal support by email for your chess questions and concerns.

𝐀𝐫𝐞 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐝𝐲 𝐭𝐨 𝐣𝐨𝐢𝐧⁉
👉 https://www.albertochueca.com/pricing/
.
.
.
.
.
#AlbertoChueca #TheRebelAlliance #chesscoach #chesscoaching #chess #chessboard #chessgame #chessmoves #chessmaster #chessplayer #chesspiece #chessclub #chesslover #chesslife #chesspuzzle #chesstournament #chesslessons #chessgames
...

8 0