Originally posted by EnigmaticCam
After 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. a3 Bxc3 5. bxc3 c5 we reach this position:
[fen]rnbqk2r/pp1p1ppp/4pn2/2p5/2PP4/P1P5/4PPPP/R1BQKBNR w KQkq - 0 1[/fen]
I've come upon this position twice as black in these two games.
It seems I can't handle this position very well. Can anybody give me a clear plan/i ...[text shortened]... on't coincide with what I thought they were). Any help would greatly be appreciated. Thanks!
I'm not an expert on this line, but I think in the first one you played the opening well, but lost it in the middlegame. The second was a complete disaster. So, what's going on in this position is the question, I guess:
White has the advantage of the two bishops, and more space. However, the board isn't completely open yet for the two bishops to attack on, and white's doubled c-pawns are potentially weak. He's also very slightly behind in development.
Given this, black should plan to keep the board closed, and to keep white at arm's length. Later on, when his king is safe and pieces developed, he can start to attack the c-pawns. If I were playing black, I'd probably be thinking of ideas like, c5, b6, d6, e5, Ba6, Rc8, Nc6-a5. You might want to delay castling, as the king might in fact prove to be safer on the queenside. White's plan will probably be to get a big centre going with e4 and f4, and then try to blast you off the board - you need also to be ready to defend.