How to play with and against the London system?

The London System is a popular chess opening, especially in the club levels. In recent times, it has been played in top grandmaster level, even by the world champion Magnus Carlsen. There is no doubt that it has become the main line in 1.d4 from being a sideline. The opening usually arises after 1.d4, 2.Nf3 and 3.Bf4. It is mainly divided into three variations:

  • 1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Bf4
    •  1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 e6 3.Bf4
      •  1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 g6 3.Bf4

      • It is a “system” opening that can be used almost against any Black defense and thus comprises a smaller opening theory than any other openings. It is a very flexible opening for White as he can engage in a battle anywhere on the board.

        Today our guest coach IM Asaf Givon will explain to you the typical ideas for both White and Black in this opening. He will give an overview about the different variations and commonly arriving middlegame positions. You can watch the instructive video lesson below:

        You may also like to learn about the Sicilian defense (Dragon variation) and the Scandinavian defense.

        Author information

        IM Asaf Givon


        Asaf Givon is an International Master from Kfar Saba, Israel. His age is 22 and playing chess since 7. He is also playing for the Kfar Saba team in the first Israeli Chess League. He got the IM title in 2013, and ever since then, he is on the road to achieve the GM title. He currently has 2 norms.


        He is teaching chess since he was 16 and he’s always very happy to teach people and to spread his love to the game.




        P.S. Did you like this video lesson? Do you want a lesson on any other opening? Please write your thoughts about it in the comments below.

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