[Event "Altibox Norway Chess"] [Site "Stavanger"] [Date "2020.10.16"] [Round "19.1"] [White "Carlsen, Magnus"] [Black "Aronian, Levon"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "D35"] [WhiteElo "2863"] [BlackElo "2767"] [Annotator "Bojkov,Dejan"] [PlyCount "115"] [EventDate "2020.??.??"] 1. Nf3 d5 2. d4 Nf6 3. c4 e6 4. Nc3 Be7 5. cxd5 exd5 6. Bf4 c6 7. Qc2 g6 { Probably Black's most important idea in the Carlsbad: getting rid of the weak light-squared bishop.} 8. e3 Bf5 9. Bd3 Bxd3 10. Qxd3 Nbd7 11. h4 {This is how White tries to make use of the opponent's weakened kingside nowadays.} a5 {N} ( {The earlier game was another one of Carlsen:} 11... Nb6 12. Ne5 Qc8 {which turned wild after} 13. O-O-O Qe6 14. Kb1 Ne4 15. Qc2 Bb4 16. Nxe4 dxe4 17. h5 g5 18. Bxg5 f6 19. Rh4 fxg5 20. Rxe4 O-O 21. Ng6 Qf7 22. Nxf8 Rxf8 23. Re5 { and Black eventually held, Carlsen,M (2863)-Nakamura,H (2736) chess24.com 2020} ) 12. Kf1 {"I felt this is strange." (Aronian)} ({Instead, he expected} 12. O-O-O) 12... a4 {Consistently creating play on his flank. Aronian is not in a hurry to castle any time soon.} 13. a3 (13. g3 {followed by Kf1-g2 was Kramnik's idea, but Aronian knew that his opponent will go for the Rh1-h3-g3 maneuver à la in the French.} h5 14. Bg5 {"this is the solid way (for White). " (Aronian)}) 13... Qb6 14. Qc2 h5 15. Bg5 O-O {Now he can. It is evident that Black is doing fine out of the opening.} 16. Ne5 ({Instead, after} 16. g3 Qa6+ 17. Kg2 Rfe8 {intending Nf6-g4 "Black is super safe." (Aronian)} 18. Bxf6 Nxf6 19. Ne5 c5) 16... Rfe8 17. Bxf6 Nxf6 18. Rh3 {"A bit strange." (Aronian)} Qb3 { "At some point I thought I had a big advantage but then he somehow got everything together." (Aronian)} 19. Qb1 {Carlsen wants to keep the queens on the board as he is still dreaming of a kingside atatck.} ({Perhaps it was time for Carlsen to switch to the defense with} 19. Qxb3 axb3 20. Nd3 Ne4 21. Rc1 Nd2+ 22. Ke2 Nc4 23. Nb1 {when White should be OK.}) 19... Ne4 $1 {Black firmly takes over the initiative.} 20. Nxe4 dxe4 21. Qxe4 Bd6 22. Rg3 ({ Instead, Kramnik's suggestion} 22. f4 {is refuted by} Qxb2 (22... c5 $5 { also looks fine for Black, (Aronian)}) 23. Rb1 Qxa3 24. Rxb7 Rab8 25. Rxf7 Qa1+ 26. Kf2 Qa2+ 27. Kg1 Qxf7 $1 {(Aronian)}) ({But perhaps} 22. Rf3 {would have been a better version of the game continuation after} Bxe5 23. dxe5 Qb5+ ({ True, Black can fight for more with} 23... Rad8 $5) 24. Kg1 Rxe5 25. Qc2) 22... Bxe5 23. dxe5 Qb5+ 24. Kg1 {With the stronger major pieces and nice queenside majority all Black needs is to trade the queens and enjoy his edge.} Rxe5 ({ Therefore, the endgame after} 24... Qxe5 $1 25. Qc2 ({But maybe Aronian was afraid of the direct} 25. Qxe5 Rxe5 26. Rd1 Raa5 27. Rd7 Rab5 28. Rf3) 25... Qe4 (25... Rad8 $5) 26. Qxe4 Rxe4 27. Rd1 Ra5 28. Rd7 Rb5 {"I thought it was on the edge of losing." (Kramnik)} 29. Rf3 f5 30. Rg3 Rg4 {looks indeed close to won for Black.}) 25. Qd4 ({Aronian: "Magnus almost took on g6 here"} 25. Rxg6+ {which the Armenian GM would have spectacularly refuted with} Kh7 $3 ({ Rather than} 25... fxg6 26. Qxg6+ Kf8 27. Qf6+ {with perpetual.})) 25... Rd5 { But now Black is obviously better as the rook on g3 makes no sense in the coming endgame.} ({After} 25... Qd5 {White can try either} 26. Qc3 ({Or} 26. Qb6 $5)) 26. Qf6 Rf5 27. Qd4 Qe2 28. e4 $1 {"Honestly I blundered this idea." (Aronian)} Rb5 ({Apparently Black disliked the fact that his rook is out of the game in case of} 28... Rf4 29. f3 Rxh4 30. Rg5) 29. Rb1 Qc2 30. Qd3 { The white pieces coordinated. "Now it is very drawish." (Kramnik)} Rc5 31. Qxc2 Rxc2 32. b3 b5 33. Rd3 axb3 34. Rbxb3 Ra4 35. Rdc3 {Another weird idea by the world champion.} ({Simpler was} 35. Rbc3 Rc4 36. Rxc4 Rxc4 37. f3 {when Black is better but not as much as in the game.}) 35... Rc4 36. Rxc2 Rxc2 37. f3 Kf8 {White is still not out of the woods yet. His opponent has a clear plan of centralizing his king and then he can start pushing his queenside passers easily.} 38. Kh2 Ke7 {With Carlsen down on the clock and in need to "take important decisions" Aronian felt that he might still win. Although he considered the position a draw.} 39. Kh3 Ke6 40. Rd3 Rc4 (40... Ke5 {was more accurate with advantage for Black after} 41. Kg3 Ra2) 41. Kg3 {"A bit too passive."(Aronian)} ({"I did not see anything wrong with"} 41. g4 Ke5 42. Kg3 hxg4 43. Kxg4 Kf6 {although it is obvious that Black is better here as well.}) 41... Ke5 42. Rd7 Rc3 43. Ra7 ({The two connected black passers should decide the outcome of the game in case of} 43. Rxf7 Rxa3) 43... f6 (43... f5 $5 { "I thought too many pawns are exchanged." (Aronian)} 44. exf5 gxf5 45. Re7+ { But Black is close to winning after} Kd4) 44. Ra8 Kd6 ({Aronian knew that the immediate advance} 44... c5 45. Rd8 $1 {is the wrong choice.}) ({But instead} 44... Rb3 $1 {was good, and only after} 45. Rc8 Kd6 {thus keeping the white king away.}) 45. Kf4 $1 {That is the difference, Carlsen activates his kingside.} Kc7 46. g4 Kb7 47. Rg8 hxg4 48. fxg4 Rxa3 49. Rxg6 b4 50. Rxf6 { Nooo! Just a step away from the draw Carlsen blunders. In a race on the opposite flanks every tempo counts.} (50. h5 $1 b3 51. Rg7+ $3 {This spoiler would have saved Carlsen, e.g.} ({Not the obvious} 51. h6 Ra8 {(Aronian)} ({ Or even better} 51... b2 {when Black wins in both cases.})) 51... Kb6 52. Rg8 Ra7 53. Rb8+ Rb7 54. Rxb7+ Kxb7 55. h6 b2 56. h7 b1=Q 57. h8=Q {and a draw.}) ( {During the game Kramnik and Polgar suggested} 50. Rg7+ Kb6 51. Rg8 {which also draws. It transposes after} b3 (51... Ra7 52. Rb8+ Rb7 $2 53. Rxb7+ Kxb7 54. Ke3 {even wins for White}) 52. h5 Ra7 53. Rb8+ Rb7 54. Rxb7+ Kxb7) ({ The engine points out that even} 50. g5 {draws here.}) 50... b3 {The pawns are unstoppable.} 51. Rf7+ Kb6 52. Rf8 Ra7 53. Rb8+ Rb7 54. Rd8 c5 55. Ke3 c4 56. Rd1 c3 57. Rb1 Kc5 58. Kd3 0-1
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