5

the

In this position, black's king is safe, has a secure queenside pawn structure, and has taken out white's left pawns and is up 2 points of material. Despite this, lichess evaluates this position at +3.5. Why?

2
  • 4
    Next time please paste the FEN or PGN so that we can easily set up the position for analysis.
    – Quasímodo
    Jan 26 at 11:28
  • 1
    @Quasímodo I would suggest you to get chessvision extension for your browser, extremely useful tool used to scan chess positions
    – B.Swan
    Jan 26 at 12:14
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[FEN "r4rk1/2p1qppp/1p3n2/p7/2B4B/4P3/PPQN1Pbb/2KRR3 w - - 0 1"]

1. f3 {traps the bishop} Rad8 2. Re2 Bxf3 (2...Bd6 Rxg2 Kh8 Rh1 {the Black king is not safe at all}) 3. Bxf6 Qxf6 (3...gxf6 Rxh2 {checkmate on h7 will follow}) 4. Rxh2 {threatening mate on h7} h6
5. Rf1 {the bishop is now pinned against the queen and will be won shortly} b5 6. Be2

f3 followed by Re2 wins a bishop (Re2 Bc6 f4 wins the other one), and with no pawns on the h- and g-files it will become evident that the Black king is not safe at all. This solution is simple enough to gain a significant advantage (+2). But there is an even more brutal sequence that wins both bishops with some finesse.

6
  • Why not 1... Bd6? But I agree that lack of white pawns offers a powerful attack on black king. Jan 26 at 8:57
  • Would not black escape the final pin with Qd6? Threatens rook (and is also unpleasant for the knight on d2, and the king on c1) Rook must move or be protected, while keeping an eye on the bishop on e2. Jan 26 at 9:06
  • @ZizyArcher. 1... Bd6 2 Re2 Bh3 3 Rh1 Qd7 4 Rh2 forces the capture of the Black white squared Bishop. Afterward said Bishop leaves the h file, there is a potential (and avoidable) Qxh7# following ... Bxf6 or a mistake on Black's part.
    – MBorg
    Jan 26 at 10:08
  • @StianYttervik sadly after Qd6 Nxf3 wins the bishop, protects the rook, and removes the knight from any unpleasant situations
    – B.Swan
    Jan 26 at 12:13
  • @B.Swan Ah. Shamefully obvious in retrospect. Thanks. Jan 26 at 12:23

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