The Italian Game

In this comprehensive course, we are going to examine the main variations and traps that can arise from the Italian game with the goal to understand the resulting positions.

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22 Total lessons
7.2 Hours of video
0 Exercises
Beginner Level
PGN-Files Available

About the course

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 course we’re going to be looking at it not as a repertoire for white nor as a repertoire from the black perspective. Instead we’re simply going to examine the main possibilities that can arise from the Italian game with the idea that we are simply students of the game and we want to be able to understand the resulting positions. After this the student is free to play the positions that arise with the black pieces, with the white pieces or even with both colors. The major topics that we’re going to look at is of course the classical Italian which is when black meets white’s move bishop to c4 with the mirror move bishop to c5, also known as the main variation with 3…Bc5. But then after this we are also going to examine the equally popular move which is 3…Nf6, the two knights defense. Sometimes in the Italian game we can actually transpose into a Scotch gambit via the particular move orders that we will be looking at in this course and so for completeness we are also going to be looking at a lot of Scotch gambit positions. The course overall is going to include many types of positions and many styles of play will arise where we’re going to include from gambit to very solid maneuvering positions. However, from start to finish we will always try to stay objective and show lines that are correct for both colors. We are not going to be too speculative, but we are certainly going to recommend lines that are going to be a very good practical idea against your opponents. Some of these lines will be things such as the Max-Lange attack or the Deutz gambit which from a white perspective are very dangerous weapons. If you like the sound of it and you want to explore the Italian game further, please join and let’s get ready to begin. This course is intended for all players, from beginners to advanced players with a FIDE rating of 1000-2000+ ELO. A complete set of PGNs of everything covered in this course can be downloaded and will help you to analyze it at your own pace and convenience.

Course structure

Lesson 1 Introduction to the Italian Game
11:52
  • Introduction to the Italian Game
    11:52
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 2 Greco Gambit - Traditional Line
27:54
  • Greco Gambit - Traditional Line
    27:54
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 3 Greco Gambit - Modern Line
19:14
  • Greco Gambit - Modern Line
    19:14
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 4 Evans Gambit Accepted
23:35
  • Evans Gambit Accepted
    23:35
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 5 Evans Gambit Declined
18:43
  • Evans Gambit Declined
    18:43
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 6 The Deutz Gambit
22:22
  • The Deutz Gambit
    22:22
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 7 The Giuoco Pianissimo
28:39
  • The Giuoco Pianissimo
    28:39
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 8 Four Knights Game - Noa Gambit
7:02
  • Noa Gambit
    7:02
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 9 The Lolli Attack
18:22
  • The Lolli Attack
    18:22
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 10 Two Knights Defense - Ulvestad Variation
15:03
  • Ulvestad Variation
    15:03
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 11 Two Knights Defense - Polerio Defense
15:22
  • Polerio Defense
    15:22
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 12 Traxler Counterattack
32:37
  • Traxler Counterattack - Part I
    23:19
  • Traxler Counterattack - Part II
    9:18
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 13 Modern Bishop's Opening
33:29
  • Modern Bishop's Opening
    33:29
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 14 Hungarian Defense
9:18
  • Hungarian Defense
    9:18
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 15 Rousseau Gambit
9:37
  • Rousseau Gambit
    9:37
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 16 Blackburne-Shilling Gambit
14:20
  • Blackburne-Shilling Gambit
    14:20
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 17 Anti-Fried Liver Attack
7:16
  • Anti-Fried Liver Attack
    7:16
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 18 Scotch Gambit
10:08
  • Scotch Gambit
    10:08
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 19 Scotch Gambit - Double Gambit
16:07
  • Scotch Gambit - Double Gambit
    16:07
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 20 Scotch Gambit - Max Lange Attack
25:19
  • Scotch Gambit - Max Lange Attack
    25:19
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 21 Scotch Gambit - Advance Variation
18:11
  • Scotch Gambit - Advance Variation
    18:11
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
Lesson 22 Opening Traps in the Italian Game
51:48
  • Trap in the Greco Gambit
    9:56
  • Trap in the Center Attack
    5:30
  • Chigorin's Trap
    10:56
  • Queens Trap in the Max-Lange-Attack
    8:36
  • Legal's Trap
    6:44
  • Fried-Liver Attack
    10:06
  • 0 Exercises
  • PGN Files and Summary
  • IM Alex Astaneh

IM Alex Astaneh

Alex Astaneh is an Irish chess player and gained the International Master title in 2011. He is a three-time Irish Champion and joined the Irish Olympiad Team for three times. He has also many years of teaching experience and offers individual training or seminars for big chess clubs. Besides regular coaching, Alex is also active on social media and provides instructive and entertaining video streaming and publishes chess videos on his channels.

2427
ELO (Peak: 2438)
1681
World Rank

What you’ll learn:

  • The Main Variations in the Italian game.
  • The most popular Opening Traps and Gambits in the Italian game.
  • The Classical Variation.
  • The Two Knights Defense.
  • The Scotch Gambit.
  • The Max-Lange Attack.
  • The Deutz Gambit.

Target Audience

Beginner (ELO 1000-1200)

0 1000 1200 1400 1600 1800+

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