A repertoire against 1.d4. Part 1: Dealing with the Catalan – GM Jan Gustafsson

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The Open and Closed Catalan Sy

The Open and Closed Catalan Systems are amongst the most challenging in chess. Move order trickier yields QGD, English, and possibly other D4 offerings. GM Jan Gustafsson does an excellent job for engaging intermediate to advanced players. I find his knowledge and recommendations convincing. It appears he does play the lines. He also points out the other mainline Bb4 Check which he does not like. It leads to a semislav position. This at the present, this is important as the Nf3 opening is more in vogue. I would like to see a follow up middle game or full game analysis. Figuring out what to do with the bad C8 bishop and when to play the freeing C5 **** push are essential for black. These issues would be appreciated. This is not the easiest material to play over the board. Kramnik, Aronian, and Karjakan games would be useful. Tiviakov also has a black system that has been played historically in the Catalan. This is an excellent set of lessons by Gustafsson.


In an earlier video series, Grandmaster Jan Gustafsson looked at how to build a 1.d4 repertoire as White. Now he switches sides to show how Black should respond to 1.d4.

His new series will build into a complete repertoire for Black and starts with how to meet one of White’s most trusted weapons: the Catalan.

The Catalan is perhaps the most popular opening at Grandmaster level today, being played by most of the top 10 including Vladimir Kramnik and Magnus Carlsen. It is important, therefore, to know how to deal with the Catalan Opening as Black, regardless of the plan White goes with.

In this 3h 22m course, GM Jan Gustafsson gives you his recommendations for getting a good game against the Catalan, explaining the main plans for both sides and alerting you to all the tricks, traps and cunning move orders you need to know.


1. Intro
2. Introducing the Catalan
3. Catalan with 7.Qc2: Intro, 10.Bf4 and Bg5
4. Catalan with 7.Qc2, 8.Qxc4 and 10.Bd2
5. Catalan with 8.a4: Intro
6. Catalan with 8.a4 and 10.Bf4
7. Catalan with 8.a4 and 10.Bg5
8. Catalan with 7.Ne5: Intro and c5
9. Catalan with 7.Ne5 Nc6
10. Catalan with 6.Nc3
11. Catalan with 6.Qc2 and other sidelines

Additional information

Running time

3 hours





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