London System – GM Adrien Demuth
World Champion Magnus Carlsen recently brought the London System back into fashion. Grandmaster Adrien Demuth, a helper of the French national team at the last couple of Olympiads, provides a complete repertoire for White. Get your opponent out of his or her comfort zone while avoiding long theoretical lines!
Come and learn the many different subtleties of the London System and build a reliable repertoire as White.
About the Author
Adrien Demuth is an International Chess Grandmaster from France. He has been the trainer of the French National Team at the Olympiads and has published books on the Reti and the Dutch.
In this introduction to his series on the London System for White, Adrien explains
the move orders he’s chosen and gives a quick overview of the options for Black that are covered in the upcoming videos.
- Part 1: Early sidelines on move 2
For his first video on the move 1…d5, Adrien decides to focus on the sidelines Black can play on move
2, and especially the Slav systems and the Chigorin Defence. He explains why White has nothing to
- Part 2: Black defers the moves …c5 and …Nc6
Adrien continues with the systems where Black plays with 2…Nf6 and 3…e6 and tries to delay …c5
and …Nc6 in order to play different move-orders. Some of these systems can be very smart for Black
and they shouldn’t be underestimated.
- Part 3: Black plays an early …Qb6
Black starts with the aggressive move 2…c5, and Adrien explains how White should reply when
his opponent develops his queen to b6 early on. Depending on the situation, White should
sometimes play Qb3, but sacrificing the b2-pawn can be even stronger.
- Part 4: Transposing to the Exchange Caro-Kann
Black sometimes meets the London System by transposing into the Exchange Caro-Kann. While this is not necessarily White’s aim when playing the London System, Adrien provides you
with an easy to follow plan that gets the theoretical stamp of approval.
- Part 5: Black develops his bishop with 5…Bg4 or 5…Bf5
One of the critical lines of the London System is when Black decides to develop his c8-bishop after
seizing the centre. Adrien explains how to handle it, and shows how your position can be both solid and
dynamic at the same time.
- Part 6: Black plays …c5, …e6 and …Be7
Adrien focuses on the systems where Black uses a Queen’s Gambit setup with an early …c5. Before
examining the main lines featured in the next videos, Adrien takes a close look at Black’s options when playing …Be7 instead of challenging the f4-bishop with the more natural …Bd6.
- Part 7: Black tries the modern lines with …Nh5
Modern theory is sometimes strange. Adrien looks at one of its eccentricities – the possibility of playing
an early …Nh5 with the idea of challenging the f4-bishop and, if possible, swapping places with it. White should
aim for quick and active development in order to restrain Black’s play.
- Part 8: Black plays the main line with 6…Bd6
Adrien looks at what is considered the main line against the London System. Every continuation for Black
after the moves 6…Bd6 7.Bg3 will be analyzed, with the aim of providing White with a logical way to
develop his play.
- Part 9: Various second moves for Black after 1…Nf6 2.Bf4
In this first video on the move 1…Nf6, Adrien shows original ways for Black to play on move 2. He
also explains why he chose to start with the move 2.Bf4, explaining the pros and cons compared to 2.Nf3.
- Part 10: Black plays 1…Nf6 2.Bf4 e6
Adrien analyzes the Nimzo-Indian setups for Black that start with 2…e6 but don’t include …d5 in the
next few moves. He explains that playing the standard London System is possible, but that you can also try to interfere with Black’s development.
- Part 11: Grünfeld and King’s Indian Systems
Adrien explains the drawbacks of playing the classical London System when Black goes for a kingside fianchetto. Instead he opts for the aggressive move 3.Nc3 in order to follow up with e4. If that is prevented (by 3…d5), he shows how dangerous a quick kingside attack with 5.h4 can be.
- Part 12: Dutch Defence, other 1st moves & conclusion
Adrien ends by talking about different first moves White may face and the possibility of still playing the London System. He pays special attention to the Dutch Defence
and its various systems, before wrapping up the series.