It's a variation of the Falkbeer countergambit that I'd like to learn to surprise my opponents but I can't find any resource on the internet.

[FEN ""]
1. e4 e5 2.f4 d5 3. exd5 c6

The only videos I find on the Falkbeer countergambit talk about 3... e4 or 3... exf4.

Whether it's books or videos I don't really mind, but I have a small preference for videos.

  • 1
    3. c6 is not possible for white. Do you mean 3 exd5 c6?
    – Ian Bush
    Feb 26 at 21:59
  • yes i edited, sorry! Feb 26 at 22:00
  • You can find some info about it here
    – emdio
    Feb 26 at 22:29
  • 4
    Have you tried Chessify app? One of its features is to enter a position and search for YouTube videos containing that exact position. It even takes you to the exact second in which it happens. It's really useful to find videos about openings.
    – emdio
    Feb 26 at 22:31
  • @emdio I've already seen the wikipedia page, it's not very complete unfortunately. Does the chessvision app does it? I'm on my laptop right now. I've seen the reddit bot doing it but I can't find how to make it work with my chrome extension. Feb 26 at 22:40

5 Answers 5


I'm very confused by the existing answers. This variation has a name. It's called the Nimzowitsch or Nimzowitsch-Marshall Countergambit. According to Wikipedia it's even the most popular response to white's 3. exd5 and in fact is considered to be the best move.

According to Chess Notes it was first played by Marshall against Teichmann in 1905.

According to this article and BCO2 the main line runs 4. Nc3 exf4 5. Nf3 Bd6 6. d4 Ne7 7. dxc6 Nbxc6 8. Bc4 0-0 9. 0-0.

As for videos, any video on the Falkbeer really should cover this variation, although I found some which don't. But here's an example (from 6:50).

  • I knew the name (and probably should have included it in the title) but I was shocked when I didn't find any resources on the internet when googling the falkbeer countergambit or even the variation's name. I hadn't watched that video because it was from white's perspective but it does indeed cover this variation, thank you! If anyone finds more resources I'm interested! Mar 1 at 11:50
  • In addition, this game collection contains many games with Nimzowitsch-Marshall Counter Gambit: chessgames.com/perl/chesscollection?cid=1004358
    – Akavall
    Mar 2 at 6:17

This is the analysis I have done with help of the Lichess database. It is a very sharp variation where Black often sacrifices material for activity.

[FEN ""] 
[ECO "C30"]
[Opening "King's Gambit"]

1. e4 e5 2. f4 c6 3. Nf3 { Played in 2/3 of the games on Lichess. } (3. Nc3! { This is a good move. If you see this move, you can assume that White knows what they are doing. I advise to transpose into KGA, since White has commited to Nc3 and ...c6 is useful to play for ...d5. } 3... exf4 4. Nf3 Be7 { What follows is a sampl line. } 5. Bc4 d5 (5... Bh4+ { Is also possible. It is a variation of the Cunningham Defense. }) 6. exd5 Nf6 7. dxc6 Nxc6 8. d4 O-O 9. Bxf4 Bg4 10. O-O Bxf3 11. gxf3 Qxd4+ 12. Qxd4 Nxd4)  (3. fxe5 Qh4+ 4. g3 Qxe4+ { White is losing. }) 3... d5 4. Nxe5 (4. exd5 e4 5. Ne5 Nf6 { This is my own suggestion, it is tricky to handle for White. } 6. dxc6 Nxc6 7. Bc4 (7. Bb5 Bc5! { Ignoring the threat of Nxc6! Why? If White does not commit to Nxc6, they now cannot castle and the game is easy for Black. } 8. Nxc6 bxc6 9. Bxc6+ Bd7 10. Bxa8 Bg4 { And the Queen is gone. })
7... Bc5! { Is the complicated way. } 8. Bxf7+ Kf8 { It is on White to prove that they can untangle this situation. Here is the best try for White. } 9. Qe2 Nxe5 10. fxe5 Bg4 11. Qf1 Qd4 12. exf6 Kxf7 { The White King is not happy. }) 4... dxe4 5. Bc4 { Note that with this move, the knight on e5 has no retreating squares. } (5. d4 Nh6 6. Nc3 f6 7. Bc4 { Transposes to the insane variation no one will ever play after 6. Nc3. }) 5... Nh6 6. O-O { You need to know how to react to this. } (6. Qh5 g6 7. Nxg6 fxg6 8. Qe5+ Qe7 9. Qxh8 Nd7 { Where Black will play to gain tempi on the Queen and ideally trap her. })  (6. Nc3!? f6 7. d4 { White calls the bluff... No one will ever play this. We cannot afford to take the knight now. } 7... Bf5 8. O-O Nd7 9. Kh1 Qe7 10. Nxd7 Qxd7 11. d5 O-O-O) 6... f6 7. Qh5+ g6 8. Nxg6 Bg4! 9. Bf7+ Nxf7 10. Qxg4 hxg6 11. Qxg6 Qd4+ 12. Kh1 Rh6 *
  • Thanks that's very helpful! Although I play d5 before c6 it ends up with similar positions. Feb 27 at 20:52
  • 1
    @FluidMechanicsPotentialFlows The analysis on 4. exd5 (which is the line that occurs the most) is directly relevant to your question, as this position comes about if White plays 4. Nf3. Also the most common line 3...c6 4.dxc6 Nxc6 5.Nf3 e4 6.Ne5 Nf6 transposes directly to 4. exd5 analysis. In general I view 2...c6 as more reliable in getting these kinds of positions than 2...d5, where for example after 3. Nf3 you will get a very different game.
    – B.Swan
    Feb 27 at 21:26
  • Understood! And yes the lines very much overlap. Feb 27 at 21:47

Hanging Pawns is a YouTube channel I particularly like because it seems to be aimed at average club players, like me, and run by an average club player who aspires to be stronger.

He has done a video on the Falkbeer Counter Gambit in which he considers three black continuations, 3...exe4 (which he says transposes to the Modern Defence to the King's Gambit Accepted), 3...c6 (the Nimzowitsch Counter Gambit which you are asking about) and 3...e4 (the Staunton variation which he considers visually frightening but harmless if white knows what they are doing).

He spends about a third of the roughly 20 minute video on this line which he considers black's most aggressive and challenging option in the Falkbeer Counter Gambit. It is the best online resource for this variation I have found.

  • 1
    Thanks, Flounderer's answer already mentioned this video but thanks for the input! :) lmk if you find any other resource on it Mar 3 at 12:56

I saw something in a Daniel Naroditsky speedrun video! He basically explained how it's like an ideal version of the caro-kann.

  • 6
    Please add a link to the video, and remember that while a link may answer the question, it is better to include the essential parts of the answer here and provide the link for reference. Link-only answers can become invalid if the linked page changes or disappears.
    – Glorfindel
    Mar 1 at 8:41

There is a free chess cloud library api where you can input the position and it will return analysis from stockfish. It has an interface where you can explore openings/endings. One of the cool things about it is that if you reach the leaf position, you can request for cloud analysis and then later analysis results will be shown.

https://www.chessdb.cn/queryc_en/ enter image description here

The score of c6 is 0. Score is from the side to move perspective. Info can be found at https://www.chessdb.cn/cloudbookc_info_en.html

Leaf position is reached
enter image description here

I created an interface using that library see the following image.

enter image description here

You can explore lines and discover how a bad move is punished. It can show the score some plies ahead from the current position. You can also save the pgn. It has no feature to request position analysis though.

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