After 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 f5 3.Nxe5 Qf6 4.Nc4 fxe4 5.Nc3 Qf7 6.Ne3 c6 7.d3 exd3 8.Bxd3 d5 9.O-O Bc5?! (it was always been the first line that was tested) 10.b4! (Stuart James, November 2005), we know is being a true massacre in last games. The key line, at the end of the article, is quoted in red
This is the known new idea to fight against 9..Bc5 instead of "old" 10.Na4 rehabilitated after 10..Bd6 11.c4 Ne7 12.cxd5 cxd5 13.Nc3 0-0! (or 12.Nc3 0-0! 13.cxd5 cxd5).
Now Black can take the pawn or decline it. The point is that if 10…Bxb4 11.Ncxd5 cxd5 12.Nxd5 seems to give White very dangerous, perhaps winning compensation as has been shown in many games so far. Thus, let's me considerer 10…Bd6 as the “best” defence for Black ("The life or death of this line" according Jeremy Silman point of view).
** 10…Bd6 and now:
A.1) 11.b5 Nf6! (11…Ne7 12.bxc6 bxc6 13.Nexd5! seems strong: 13…cxd5 - if 13...Nxd5 Silman give 14.Re1+ Kf8 15.Bc4 and now 15..Be6 16.Rxe6! and Nxd5 with a powerful attack A.M. - 14.Nb5 and now old Fritz8 gave 14...Be5!? 15.f4! Bxa1 16.Nd6+ Kf8 17.Nxf7 Kxf7 with complicated position so Black isn’t doing badly as far as material goes; Silman analyzes 18.Ba3 not a bad move, but I prefer 18.c4! and Black has still a playable position though a tough's one. American player also note 14..Qf6 15.Bb2 Qxb2 16.Nd6+ Kd7 17.Nxc8 but I don't see any thing !, after 17..Rxc8 yes indeed Black position is ugly but still playable, he has an extra piece only for one pawn !? Probably are betters 17.Rb1 Qf6 18.Ne4 or 17.Nf7!? Rf8 18.Qg4+ Ke8 19.Nd6+ Kd8 20.Nxc8 Nxc8 21.Rab1 - A.M.-) 12.bxc6 (12.Nf5 Bxf5 13.Bxf5 0-0 - A.M.-) 12...bxc6 13.Nexd5?! (I prefer any other move though Black will play soon the castle and get the equality - A.M.-) 13...cxd5! (13…Nxd5 14.Re1+ gives White more than enough for the sacrificed piece, Silman) and White have not anything.
A.2) 11.Nexd5 cxd5 and now the order of the moves is very important, so we have the following possibilities:
A.2.a) 12.Nb5 Bc7 (12...Bxb4?! of Rosenstielke-Koudelka, cr. e-mail 5th. LG World Ch. final, 2005/06 one of the first games with this variation, is very risky. Now 13.c3 a6 - 13...Bf8 14.Re1+ Kd8 15.Bc4! Nf6 16.Bg5 - 14.Qa4 axb5 15.Qxa8 Bd6 16.Re1+ Kf8 17.Ba3; but I suggest as very interesting 12...Qd7!? - A.M.-) 13.Re1+ Kf8 14.Nxc7 Qxc7 15.c4 Nd7 unclear.
A.2.b) 12.Re1+ (best) 12...Ne7 and we are transposing to the next chapter under B.3; if instead Black retreat his King, he will have admit a powerful attack:
* 12...Kd8 13.Bc4 (or 13.Be4) 13...Nf6 14.Bxd5 Qh5 15.Bf4 Qxd1 16.Raxd1 Bxb4 17.Bxb7+ Nbd7 18.Bxa8 Bxc3 19.Re3 as Melchor-Paiva Moreira, cr. e-mail LADAC thema sf. 1, 2008
* 12...Kf8 13.Bc4 Nc6 (13...Nf6 14.Nxd5 Bxh2+ 15.Kxh2 Ng4+ 16.Qxg4! Bxg4 17.b5 Be6 18.Ba3+ Ke8 19.Rxe6+ Kd8 20.Be7+ - also 20.Rae1- 20...Kc8 21.Re4 with attack, Hiarcs10) 14.Nxd5 until here Rosenstielke-Rouzaud, cr. e-mail 5th. LG World Ch. final, 2005/06 another of the first games with 10.b4, and now besides of game's move 14...Nf6? 15.Nxf6+ Qxf6 16.Bb2 +-, is a bit better 14..Be6 15.b5 or 14...Rb8 15.Bb2 b5 16.Bb3 but with a clear advantage and dangerous initiative for White in both lines.
B.1) 11.Re1! is by far the most critical response:
11…Ne7 12.Nexd5 cxd5 13.Nb5 0-0 14.Nxd6 Qxf2+ 15.Kh1 Bg4 16.Qd2 and now so both 16…Qxd2 17.Bxd2 and 16…Qh4 17.Bb2 are terrible, Black must to choose 16…Qf6 and paradoxically we have transposed to a very known line from another move order (9...Bd6 10.Re1 Ne7 11.Nexd5! cxd5 12.Nb5 0-0 13.Nxd6 Qxf2+ 14.Kh1 Bg4 15.Qd2 Qh4 with the Strautins' idea of 16.b4! preparing to bring his bishop to the a1-h8 diagonal, whilst at the same time b4-b5 can be a useful resource) 17.Qg5! where Black’s getting stomped. Some examples:
B.1.a) 17…Qxa1? 18.Qxg4 is simply winning for White, 18...Nbc6 (18..Qf6 19.Bg5 Qxd6 20.Bxe7 Re8 21.Bxh7+ Kxh7 22.Qh5+ Qh6 23.Qxe8 +- analysis by Viljams Strelis and also played in Sireta-Zaniratti, cr. e-mail 5th. LG World Ch. gr. F, 2002
B.1.b) 17..Qxg5 18.Bxg5 Nec6 19.b5 Nb4 20.Be7 Rf2 21.Bh4! Fritz8 (or 21.Rf1 of Strautins, V)
B.1.c) 17..Nbc6 - relatively best - 18.Qxg4 Qxd6 and now:
* 19.Re6 Qxb4 20.Qxb4 (20.Qh3 Ng6 21.Bg5 Qc3 with a small plus for Black (Borrmann-Gnirk, cr. ICCF thematic, 2000/01) 20...Nxb4 21.Rxe7 Nxd3 22.Ba3 Nf2+ 23.Kg1 Ng4 24.Rxb7 Rf7 is equal according Hiarcs10
* 19.Bd2 Bf7 (19...Ng6? 20.Re6 is worse) 20.Re6 Qc7 Melchor-Gnirk, cr. ICCF thematic, 2001/02 and now instead of game's move 21.b5?! Ne5 etc. I myself suggest 21.Rae1 Raf8 22.Bc3 with advantage.
* 19.Bb2 (the natural move and by far the most played at present) 19...Rf7 20.a3 (or 20.Qh3!? h6 21.a3) 20...Ng6 (if 20..Raf8 21.b5 Nb8 - 21...Nd8 22.a4 with idea Ba3- 22.Be5 Qd7 23.Qxd7 Nxd7 24.Bd6 Re8 25.Re6) 21.Re6 (also 21.Bf5!? Qf4 22.Be6 Qxg4 23.Bxg4 with advantage, played by John Elburg in two of his games) 21...Qf4 22.Qh5 with advantage was played three times with wins for White in all cases
Since all this is obviously unplayable for us, Latvian fanatics!, few years ago I myself had placed my hopes on Black’s last possibility: 11…Ne7 12.Nexd5 cxd5 13.Nb5 Bxb4 (instead of 13…0-0).
BLACK’S “LAST” HOPE
White now has three ways to play the position:
C.1.a) our hands slipped with 14.Nc7+ Kd8 15.Nxa8 Bxe1 16.Qxe1 Nbc6 when Black’s King will always be a source of discomfort, but White’s Knight is trapped and in many lines won’t get out alive. White’s chances are probably better, but it’s by no means clear how big that advantage will turn out to be. 17.Bg5 (17.Rb1 b6 18.a4 Bb7 19.Nxb6 axb6 20.Rxb6 Nc8 21.Rb1 and now, instead of 21...Nd6 which after 22.f3 leaves White with some compensation for the sacrificed piece according Jeremy Silman, I suggest 21..h6 avoiding Bg5+, or even 21..Re8 or 21..Ba8!? and Black is resolving their problems !). In this point, Silman only analyzes 17...Be6 proposing 18.Rb1!?, 18.Qe3!?, and 18.Bh4!?, but I would suggest 17...Bd7!? as more accurate and even totally best !. We see:
* 18.Rb1 h6 (18..Kc8?! is dangerous 19.Qe3 Nf5 20.Qf4 Be6 21.Qa6 menacing Ba6!) 19.Bxe7+ Qxe7 20.Qxe7+ Kxe7 21.Nc7 Kd6 22.Rxb7 Ne5 23.Bb5 Rc8 24.Bxd7 Kxd7 25.Na6+ Kd6 26.f4 Ng6
* 18.f3 h6 19.Bh4 g5 20.Bg3 Nf5 21.Nc7 Nxg3 22.Qxg3 Qf6 23.Re1 Nb4 24.Ne6+ Bxe6 25.Qd6+ Kc8 26.Qxb4 Rd8
Of course it will have many other lines all need to be analyzed though I don’t have the time to do the position justice – perhaps a reader will find something? ...).
C.1.b) 14.Bd2 (!) (If 14.Nc7+ doesn’t lead to a serious advantage, then this simple and safe move should be enough.) 14…0-0 15.Bxb4 Nbc6 (15…Qxf2+?? 16.Kh1 leaves Black’s pieces hanging to threats like Bxe7 and/or Nc7. Silman) 16.Bxe7 Nxe7 17.Nc7 Rb8 18.Qe2 Nc6 (18...Ng6 is weaker 19.Nxd5 Bf5 20.Bc4 Kh8 21.Bb3 Rbe8 24.Qf3 Ne5 25.Qf4 Ng6 26.Qc7! –A.M.-) 19.Nxd5 Bf5 20.Bc4 Kh8 21.Ne3 and a forced series of moves has left White with a solid extra pawn, analysis by Silman again. After 21...Be6 22.Rad1 etc. this series of moves was tested in Melchor-Elburg, cr. e-mail, 2008, where White has a small advantage.
But in this point, for instance after 21..Be6 22.Rad1 Rbe8 Hiarcs11 only give a slight advantage!; in fact, it must be better for White, but Black has chances to exchange the queenside pawns and draw the resulting 3 vs. 2 on the kingside situation as is usual in other lines as 10.Na4 Bd6 11.c4 Ne7 12.cxd5 cxd5 13.Nc3 0-0 or 3.Nxe5 Nf6 4.exf5. Another chance is in 20th. move if White try 20.Bxf5 Qxf5 21.Rad1 (Elburg-Melchor, cr. e-mail, 2008) and now not logical 21..Rbe8 so 22.Qxe8! ( I. Terenin ), if not 21...Qg6 or 21...Rbd8; perhaps even 19...Bd7!? preparing Rbe8 and personally I like for White this position than Silman’s previous one, but Black is solid and he has solved the worst of it.
C.1.c) 14.Rb1! played first time in Schmid-Domingo, FICGS e-mail, 2009 and quoted at http://www.chesspub.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1194567910/30 by Igor Terenin seems ruinous for Black so Rook on e1 is safe ( if not Nd6+). For instance, a game Melchor-Paiva Moreira, cr. e-mail, LADAC thematic Final, 2010 continued: 14..0-0 15.Rxb4 Qxf2+ 16.Kh1 Nbc6 17.Be3 Qf6 18.Rf4 +- (decisive advantage) 18..Qxf4 (18..Bf5 19.Bxf5 Nxf5 20.Bc5) 19.Bxf4 Rxf4 20.Nc7 Bg4 21.Bxh7+! Kh8 (21..Kxh7 22.Qd3+ Bf5 23.Qg3) 22.Qc1 Raf8 23.Bd3 etc. (1-0, 39 moves)