I am looking to patch up a lot of my holes in my opening repertoire. One of them is the Alekhine's Defence. Do any of you know a good, aggressive line against the Alekhine's Defence? (If there is no good aggressive lines, any line that doesn't give black the advantage right away is fine, too) Thanks!

  • 4
    Take a look into the four pawns attack line - it is probably the most aggressive/sharp one; also quite tricky to play correctly on both sides. Dec 24, 2015 at 10:15

2 Answers 2


Spielmann Gambit

[Event "?"]
[ECO "B02"]
[FEN "rnbqkbnr/pppppppp/8/8/8/8/PPPPPPPP/ b - - 0 1"]

[Setup "1"]

1. e4 Nf6 2. Nc3 d5 3. e5 Nfd7 ( 3... d4 {Black dodges the gambit, resulting and open, even game with even material, which is quite satifying anyway, if you want to dodge Alekhine Defense theory} 4. exf6 dxc3 5. fxg7 cxd2+ ) 4. e6 {Spielmann Gambit! White gives up a pawn to disorganize Blacks pieces, and will try to keep Black disorganized as long as possible. White has also good attacking possibilities on king side.} fxe6
5. d4 g6 (5... e5? { Trying to free up immediately, but... } 6.dxe5 e6 (6... Nxe5? 7. Qxd5 {Black has no material advantage and white has better position}) { Black gave up his extra pawn for reaching this defensive position. Worthy? I don't think so. White has a good play without giving up material.} ) {I think this is the best move for Black here. Fianchettoing bishop would give black a nice control over black squares in the center. Also ...g6 move closes e8-h5 diagonal, which will be used by white queen in some variations}

This is my favorite and totally awesome for a white player who wants to get initiative and attack.

After 5.d4, white plays to maintain control of central black squares, avoiding blacks freeing move ...e5, not letting black to develop, and attack from king-side using f7. I won a lot of games with whites in this variation, most importantly I had great fun avoiding Alekhine opening and gaining an attacking position instantly :)

Bonus: You can reach the same position in Scandinavian Defense too! 1.e4 d5 2.Nc3 Nf6.

For all this reasons, this is a very nice variation to put into repertoire as white.

However, black can dodge White's gambit by 3... d4, which results with even, open game. But anyway, Alekhine is avoided.

Notes about edits: I'm trying to add more analysis and more variations as you ask in comments, but it's really hard to cover all the analysis details in here. I also know there is not much material out there to study this gambit, so I'll do my best to cover as much as I can in my spare time.

Less preferable alternative

[ECO "B02"]
[FEN "rnbqkbnr/pppppppp/8/8/8/8/PPPPPPPP/ b - - 0 1"]
[Setup "1"]

1. e4 Nf6 2. Bc4 Nxe4 3. Bxf7+ Kxf7 4. Qh5+ Kg8 ( 4... g6 5. Qd5+ e6 6. Qxe4 )
5. Qd5+ e6 6. Qxe4  *

If you opponent is greedy enough, you can go for this, but I don't like resulting position as white, I would prefer black side, so I didn't ever play this. Anyway, this is an option.

  • 1
    Your suggestions are definitely aggressive lines against Alekhine's defence! I would like to add that 1.e4 Nf6 2.Nc3 e5 leads to the Vienna, which could be annoying from a repertoire point of view. Btw, isn't 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 f5 called the "Schliemann gambit"?
    – Maxwell86
    Dec 25, 2015 at 12:15
  • 1
    Yes, it can go into Vienna as well. But White players like to avoid Alekhine anyway, so its a worthy try to play 2.Nc3 I think. Btw, its not schliemann, its spielmann, you are right, excuse me for my memory :) I quit chess 2 years ago, info comes from deep dark places of my memory :)
    – ferit
    Dec 25, 2015 at 21:29
  • After 5.d4, is there a reason black cannot go on with e5 straight away and free up?
    – Mildwood
    Dec 26, 2015 at 11:25
  • Popular moves of Black here are 5... g6 and 5... c5 to free up. I think the best move is 5... g6, developing king side, fianchettoing bishop and gaining more control on central black squares. 5... c5 idea is to weaken whites central black square control, often c5 and g6 ideas played together. 5... e5, is playable of course, but after 6.dxe5 6... Nxe5? 7.Qxe5, material is even, and obviously white is better. If black plays 5... e5, it should continue with calm moves like 6... e6. But this is again not good for black I think, black shouldn't give up his extra pawn for reaching bad position.
    – ferit
    Dec 26, 2015 at 14:56
  • 1
    In your first line according to Chessok opening tree black has almost 60% performance after c5. Althogh white is active black has an extra pawn, strong center, and counter chances. As an alekhine player myself I would take this position anytime with black. In the second line after d5 black plays the moves Bd6 h6 Kh7 Rf8 (in some order) while white develops, and he has the center, a bishop pair and the half open f line to attack. These two lines work if black is not prepared, but otherwise white is the one fighting for equalising.
    – Usern4me
    Dec 28, 2015 at 10:13

Maybe it is a good idea to take a look at books that discuss Alekhine's defence from black's perspective? These books (should) cover all possible (main)lines for white. You can pick the line that you like the most.

Recently, a opening book has been published by father (GM) and son (IM) Sveshnikov, in which they propose Alekhine's defence as a repertoire for black: A Chess Opening Repertoire for Rapid and Blitz.

That being said, according to the Game Database of ChessTempo, the most popular replies for white are: 1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5 3.d4 d6

  • 4.Nf3 (the mainline)
  • 4.c4 Nb6 5.f4 (the Four Pawns Attack) and 5.exd6

      [FEN ""]
      [StartPly "6"]

      1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5 3.d4 d6 4.Nf3 (4.c4 Nb6 5.f4 (5.exd6)) 4...Bg4 (4...dxe5 5.Nxe5) (4...g6 5.Bc4) 5.Be2

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