Tarrasch Variation

The 3.Nd2 variation against the French Defence may bear the name of Dr Siegbert Tarrasch (1862–1934), but in fact Tarrasch soon discarded the move and gave his preference to 3.Nc3. At first glance, 3.Nd2 looks unnatural because it blocks in the Bc1. But its advantages are that it avoids the sharp and unclear positions of the Winawer Variation and that the c-pawn remains mobile. Should it come to the creation of the d4-e5 pawn chain, Black’s typical attack with the move ...c7-c5 can be met by the stabilising move c2-c3. That will keep the white pawn chain intact and after ...cxd4 cxd4 the advanced white pawn on e5 would retain the solid protection of the d-pawn.

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