Italian Game | Giuoco Piano | Greco Gambit – Traditional Line | Chess Openings | Alex Astaneh

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The Italian game nowadays is one of the absolute most popular opening choices played from beginner level right up to the best players in the world. Therefore, it is a very good opening to familiarize yourself with. In this video, IM Alex Astaneh is covering the main variations, in particular the Greco Gambit – Traditional Line in the Giuoco Piano of the Italian game. The main focus of this video is to show you the main strategies and plans for both sides in the different variations.

The Giuoco Piano in the Italian game is characterized by the following moves:

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.c3 Nf6

White has several major options here, but the variation covered in this video is the so-called Greco Gambit which arises after White’s center attack with 5.d4.

After 5…exd4 6.cxd4 Bb4+

White has several options here:

4:10 7.Bd2/ 7.Nd2, Other moves for White
9:12 7.Nc3, Greco Gambit
After 7…Nxe4 8.0-0,
Black’s has two options here:
10:04 8…Nxc3
After 9.bxc3 Bxc3, White has two options:
10:45 10.Qb3
14:14 10.Ba3, Aitken Variation
14:55 8…Bxc3
15:00 9.bxc3
16:40 9.d5
Black has two major options:
17:05 9…Ne5, not covered in the video
17:15 9…Bf6
White has several options:
17:20 10.dxc6
18:16 10.Re1

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48 Comments

  1. Amazing video, and what a line at the end! If you don't know it as black it can be very hard to defend in time scramble; and white needs to remember to play Bb5 or there is no perpetual. However, there is no need to accept the knight sacrifice – black can play 14… Bf5 instead and after the inevitable exchanges (15. Rxe7 Qxe7 16. Nxf8 Rxf8) the position is plainly equal, with no more tricks from white. Still a draw, but with less chances of blundering something 😉

  2. Great job. I've been playing mainly the Italian game, center attack since I started playing chess and this video has been so much help. Appreciate it.

  3. U explain everything 10 times bro, do it once and efficiently plz

  4. Loved it. Ideas and planning behind the moves have been lucidly explained. Better than many channels out there. The vids deserve so many more views. Looking forward to watching all of them. Thank you.

  5. Excellent lecture!

    Might I suggest that in the camera angles focusing on the lecturer rather than the board, the lecturer looks into the camera whenever he's not looking at the board?

  6. Bro or sir do you do livestreming? If yes then where and pls tell the name of that channel

  7. Very nice video easy to understand clear and interesting explanations

  8. Just a perfect explanation!
    Thanks a lot and please keep posting!

  9. Arguably the best chess video I've seen to date – instantly subscribed. Was not expecting anything nearly so comprehensive and clear. Great teacher – pulls off the difficult task of explaining things in a very elementary way without making you feel silly. You deserve more views and keep it up!

  10. Very good video, but after Bc5 I prefer the Evans Gambit

  11. Thanks Alex for the wonderful presentation. In the Moller's defense (9 d5), Black has 9.. Ne5 response which I know you haven't covered. I was referring 'My great predecessors -Part 1 , Pg 107' and between 9..Bf6 and 9..Ne5 , Garry puts an exclamation for the latter. Is 9..Ne5 slightly preferable (as the line in the book shows) over 9..Bf6 or is it a matter of preference ?

  12. I just want to point out the move d5 (12:41) in response to 10. Qb3 (in the 8…Nxc3 variation) here isn't winning and white still has an advantage after 11. Bxd5 O-O 12. Bxf7+ Rxf7 13. Ng4 Be4
    14. Qxc6 Rf3, 15. Nxe6 Rxe6
    16. Qc4 . Moral of the story, don't take on c3 with the knight period.

  13. What a delight to watch but not without spinning my head :-). I'll need hours of game to practice the variations of Greco Gambit. Keep up the great work … love your channel and love your videos / camera angles, audio/video quality and above all the simplicity of explaining. Alex – take a bow 🙇

  14. Hi 🙂 . I hav a query . At time 5:40, where you suggested most games end in draw, why can’t the white place it’s king at b5, where he can easily win one of the knights. 🙂

  15. This guy is great! Even a lowly 1200 player like me can absorb this! His presentation is very easy to learn and remember. I can not only easily memorize the moves but clearly understand them thanks to his thorough and methodical excellent demonstrations.

  16. good video..but anyone knows the name of the board ? the brand? looks nice 😀

  17. This is by far the best chess channel i have come across for beginners. I think most players who have reached a high level of chess struggle to appreciate just how slow and stupid the rest of us are. Thank you for this amazing content.

  18. grecos gambit because is name Gioacchino Greco not Greek

  19. Thanks a lot for a great video! 😀👍♟

  20. The class is easy to follow, excellent presenter, exposes ideas with great fluidity which makes it very easy to assimilate, very clear ideas without much unnecessary adornment. Congrats!! IM Alex

  21. Alex Astaneh’s chess videos are some of the best available on YouTube. Calm, systematic, and lucid presentation with simple but great visuals. A pleasure to watch and learn from.

  22. Thank you for this video! It was a wonderful and detailed one!

  23. nice informative videos. Your vice is good like some documentary commentator, very clear explanations

  24. If I were white here, I prefer to play 6.e5 or 6. O-O to pose complications on the black's king on e8.

  25. Thank you for this excellent video. A clear and concise breakdown of some of the possible lines of the Greco Gambit. I was really proud of the fact that (although I had never seen this gambit before) I made the correct moves to counter the different lines involved in this gambit before you broke them down and explained them. Keep up the great work ~ GG.

  26. Excellent, clear, analysis. Bravo

  27. First time learning opening theory, this was really an engaging and interesting lecture, tysm.

  28. Omg tht was one long engine line just for a draw

  29. "giuoco piano" and "giuoco pianissimo do not mean "quiet game" and "very quiet game". This is a common misconception in English speaking chess content, likely coming from a 1996 English book quoted by wikipedia. But that book was just wrong. "Piano" can mean "quiet", but as an adverb, thus "quietly" (thus "piano" and "pianissimo" in music, because the meaning is "play quietly!" or "play very quietly", as an order that the conductor gives to the orchestra, or the notation to the conductor. As an adjective, as it is here relative to the noun "game", "piano" means "plain". So, "plain game" and "very plain game" is the correct translation.

  30. Actually the Greco Gambit Stockfish Eval is very close to even according to Stockfish 16, fluctuating between 0 and -0.2 at a depth in the 30s.

  31. What a lesson
    I feel very sad that you just habe 43k subcrb
    You deserved milions my freind alex❤

  32. One of the best opening explanations I have ever heard!

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