Chess Lesson # 138: Master The Middlegame

Chess players! It’s time to officially learn how to evaluate any middlegame position and come up with a plan. At this point in our course, you are familiar with the different variable and constant factors we consider when properly evaluating any position. We just need to get organized and learn how to formulate a plan based on them.

More quick games at Tato The Forker’s channel 👉

Full game used in this lesson:

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My Book Recommendations:

First tactics book:
Mixed tactics book:
Advanced tactics book:
Advanced tactics book (II):
Carlsen’s book (excellent):
Kramnik’s book (excellent):
Pirc Defense book:
100 endgames you must know:
Endgames book:

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Chess is an intellectual battle where players are exposed to numerous mental processes such as analysis, attention to detail, synthesis, concentration, planning and foresight. Psychological factors are also present on and off the board; playing Chess stimulates our imagination and creativity. Every single move a player makes is the result of a deep analysis based on the elements presented on the battlefield.

Chess in its essence teaches us psychological, sociological and even moral values. In a Chess game, both players start with the same amount of material and time. The fact that the white pieces move first is considered to be practically irrelevant —especially because a player typically plays one game as white and one game as black. Consequently, the final result of the battle solely depends on each player. It doesn’t matter if you win by taking advantage of your opponent’s mistakes or by simply avoiding mistakes yourself. Truth is that Chess is an extremely individual sport and our defeats can only be blamed on ourselves and no one else. And this, in the end, only benefits us because we learn to be and feel responsible for our actions and never come up with excuses to justify ourselves.

We also learn that when it comes to our victories on the board, our opponent’s mistakes play a more significant role than our own skills. Let’s not forget that a Chess game without any mistakes would be a draw. This way, Chess provides us with another valuable life lesson: be humble at all times.

About National Master Robert Ramirez:

With an outstanding background as a professional Chess player and over 8 years of teaching experience, Robert Ramirez brings both his passion and his expertise to the board, helping you believe & achieve!

Robert Ramirez was introduced to the fascinating world of Chess when he was 5 years old and has participated in prestigious tournaments such as the World Open Chess Tournament and the Pan American Intercollegiate Team Championships. Thanks to his performance, he has earned his National Master title from the United States Chess Federation.

Currently, NM Ramirez and his carefully selected team teach at several private schools in the counties of Miami-Dade and Broward and they also offer private lessons. He says the key to their success as Chess coaches is their ability to adapt to every student and to make lessons fun and interesting for students and even their family members.


  1. Hello guys! Here is the evaluation of the homework exercise:Based on the isolated d-pawn (constant factor), White should carry out the following plan:1) Double up rooks on the d d-file2) Trade knights (to leave Black with a bad minor piece —bishop)3) Centralize our queen to e5 (to add more pressure to that d5 pawn4) Place our bishop on f35) Once all of the black pieces are tied up to the defense of d5, we start attacking the kingside to create a second weakness*Here is the link to the entire game 👍 👉

  2. 1:09 I would say black is better because white has a bad dark square bishop that needs to be developed as well. Black on the other side has completed his development and can even go to an engame by trading queens and a pair of rooks, claiming that white has a bad bishop.

  3. Black is better.__ Oops guess that's why I lose a lot.

  4. I think white looks better because white can easily improve the position with e4. This activates the dark square bishop while making black's bishop really bad. White could then look to exchange off the defensive knight on f6 and keep the centre open for the bishops to attack. The two open files are begging for rooks, but I'm not sure which side gets to these first. Black can go after the weak doubled pawns.

  5. the first game: no material advantage. white has a bit exposed king, but black no black bishop, so doesnt matter that much. no passed pawns. white has weak double pawns and weaker pawn islands. white has controll of an semi open file and the pair of bishops. but also inactiv black bishop (but easy to fix with a pawn push on e3-e4). black has better harmony, can get an open file quite easy with a tempo on the queen and has targets to attack. as black i would try to get to an endgame and attack the pawns. as white i dont want to trade (because weak pawns and to keep the pair of bishop) and try to get my pieces in a better position. i think right know the pair of bishop is stronger than the weak pawns. so white is a little better.

  6. My thoughts on the homework: white has a small advantage, because of black's isolated queen's pawn. The advantage is not great at this point, but white should immediately focus on attacking black's only weakness.

  7. This was brilliant. I know I've said thank you a few dozen times but I truly appreciate your efforts on our behalf.

  8. @NM Robert Ramirez you are a great teacher I’ve raised my score by 300 just from your pirc defense video. Thank you for the awesome content keep it up 👍

  9. 1. White weaknesses: double b pawns, b4 pawn hanging, hard to protect, bad dark bishop, underdeveloped, cramped position, hard to play for white, hard to come up with moves. I'd like to develop the dark bishop.
    Maybe I'm overlooking things but that's my first evaluation here… 🤔

  10. Play against isolated pawn on d5👍
    Very interesting lesson on evaluation. Excellent to improve games that are not blitz ones.🇨🇵

  11. Id like to argue the idea that a strong pawn center is "constant" even a c3 d4 e4 pawn center (grunfeld mainline) is intended to be chipped away at with e5, c5, Bg7, etc

  12. Great and simple as always. Can you recommend a book with exercises for middlegame for different levels? I am now working with the second book on tactics you recommend.

  13. @NM Robert Ramirez Yaaaay!!! 😊
    The slow, analytical lessons are back! I've really been missing them. Very well delivered and explained. Thanks a lot Rob. Great stuff! 😊👍

  14. At the beginning position I think black is better. More active pieces, that bishop is gonna be a monster & safer king.

  15. Hi Robert, there is an account called "Tato the Forker" on YT that is using your content. Is this you or a content thief?

  16. btw you should consirder making video on scid vs pc its a free chessbase software if combined with databases like caissabase or other database and updating daily games with this week in chess site i made my studies on it insted of lichess because we can even use it offline its great for those who couldnt afford chessbase it has helped me a lot in prepration

  17. 1:22 I'm not looking at the below answers, I'm gonna say BLACK is better & you can see if I've edited my answer. Final Answer! I'm not super confident…

  18. 12:15 Well looks like I'm going back to the Bishop pair lesson. Can't do it vs. max engine! I can get all the pawns & then I can't break through with K/R vs K/B/B +pawns

  19. Another great chess tutorial.Keep them coming.

  20. For the first position I did think Black was better because of the double pawns and lack of development White had 🙂

  21. Regarding the homework position (without looking at your answers):

    White should be better. I hope your little friend does not say something else!!!
    I would consider piling up on the isolated pawn……
    And then putting my Night on f5 and checkmating the the white king with the Qg7 😉

  22. 12:53 my plan: i will double up my rooks on the C file, put my knight on the center , block his isolated pawn, trade Queens and in the endgame i will pressure the isolated pawn and win it. And win the game.

  23. Your channel is underrated. Ur such a boss bro. Keep it up. 🤙🏼

  24. I thought black was better based on “positional advantages” but as soon as I calculated a few lines I felt white had the initiative and better tactical chances. Commenting before watching rest of vid.

  25. I really like the games, where nothing crazy happens, when it is on the same time a complet domination. That show really the skill and brutal of a chess player^^

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