I'm working through Practical Chess Exercises by Ray Cheng.
(Diagram 13) Black To Move
I studied this position for a little while and debated two moves.
A. 1. ... Na5 and if 2.f4 (to activate the g2 bishop) then 2. ... e4. 2. ... e4 is in fact
not best. 2. ... exf4 is correct with a big edge to black. Therefore, 2.f4 isn't correct either. I still don't see what's wrong with 1. ... Na5.
The other move I studied was ...
B.1. ... e4 (!-Cheng) 2.fxe4 Ne5
I'll quote the author here. "1. ... e4! 2.fxe4 Ne5. Black gets an outpost for his knight, the e-file (with targets) for his rook, and greater scope for his bishop. White's light-squared bishop is obstructed by his own pawn on e4, however."
That's all true but ... Black wins a pawn in line A. and sacrifices one (temporarily) in line B. After 1. ... Na5, white is doing all that much either.
I wondered how one could be better than the other.
After plugging the position into an engine, even the engine barely gives preference to one over the other (I think it did in fact like 1. ... e4.).
Is either move acceptable or is there really such a huge difference that makes 1. ... e4 preferable?
I'd love other player's thoughts.