Traps, Tricks & Mistakes: Carlsen Caught into a Trap

Most players believe that a trap is a cunning way to get some “tangible” advantage (i.e. winning a piece, the queen, checkmate the opponent,…) There is a second type of traps which give intangible results, i.e. strategic advantage. Today’s trap is one of that second group. It appeared in one game played in the tournament Altibox Norway Chess 2017. Carlsen was caught in a strategical trap. It is not an easy trap. His opponent was Levon Aronian. In the press meeting after the game, Aronian admitted that he had studied the position fourteen years back (in 2003!). But he never had the chance to put it into practice… until now!

This game was impressive not only because of the defeat of Magnus but also because of the brilliant execution by Aronian. With two almost consecutive sacrifices, the black position became hopeless. Carlsen struggled to find the best defence, but Aronian had everything under control.

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