I couldn't find any recent books, and most references seem to point towards just switching to the normal Panov-Botvinnik line. I'm specifically looking for a book on the White side of this line:

[fen ""]

1.e4 c6 2. c4 d5 3. exd5 cxd5 4. cxd5 Nf6 5. Nc3 Nxd5 

1 Answer 1


As has been commented, D'Costa's book, The Panov-Botvinnik Attack: Move by move, looks at least relevant, and 2014 wasn't so long ago! Here's a link to it on Amazon: https://amzn.to/3rWf1XH

As for the specific line that you've quoted, that's covered in Chapter Five of the book, White Plays 2. c4:

Dubbed "Panov's little brother" by many sources, this variation packs more punch than it might at first appear to. Many Panov players have been put off by 5. ... Nc6 in the main line, as we just saw in Chapter Four, and have searched for new ways to reach their beloved IQP positions. On such way is to delay moving the d2-pawn so it is not a target for an early ... Nc6. The plan is to later play d4 and reach a standard IQP position, thereby sidestepping the potential shenanigans that we saw in the previous chapter.

The chapter starts by examining Black's alternatives to 2. ... d5, as "Black is not obliged to play 2. ... d5 and this is a slight drawback to 2. c4 from White's perspective." But the Chapter soon returns to the line you're looking for. One game it relies on (actually a transposition from 1. c4 c6) shows a young Carlsen playing like Alpha-Zero (h4 then h5) before it was cool:

[FEN ""]
[Event "Corus Group A"]
[Site "Wijk aan Zee NED"]
[Date "2009.01.31"]
[EventDate "?"]
[Round "12"]
[Result "1-0"]
[White "Magnus Carlsen"]
[Black "Jan Smeets"]
[ECO "B10"]
[WhiteElo "?"]
[BlackElo "?"]
[PlyCount "57"]

1.c4 c6 2.e4 d5 3.exd5 cxd5 4.cxd5 Nf6 5.Nc3 Nxd5 6.Nf3 Nc6
7.Bb5 e6 8.O-O Be7 9.d4 O-O 10.Re1 Bd7 11.Bd3 Rc8 12.Nxd5 exd5
13.Ne5 Bf6 14.Bf4 g6 15.Qb3 Na5 16.Qb4 Be6 17.Bh6 Bg7 18.Bxg7
Kxg7 19.h4 Re8 20.h5 f6 21.Nf3 b6 22.Bb5 Re7 23.Re2 Rcc7
24.Rae1 Kf7 25.Qd2 Qf8 26.Qf4 Bf5 27.g4 Bc8 28.b4 Nb7 29.Bc6

Of course, you've probably already found this book and, as you're asking here, you've probably disregarded it. Maybe that's because the chapter on the line you're looking for isn't, well, it's just a chapter rather than the whole book? Maybe it's because many of the games it uses to discuss the strategic ideas are already rather old?

Either way, I found this book to be very helpful - unusually engaging amongst opening books, and a valuable asset in my quest to master the IQP. Considering how 2. c4 isn't the main-line in the Panov-Botvinnik Attack, I suspect you'll be hard-pressed to find better.

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