Xavi Gonzalo traveled more than 4,000 miles for the experience of a lifetime this week at Halas Hall.
The Bears welcomed the football coach from Spain to OTAs Monday through Wednesday to observe, learn, network and meet with coaches, scouts, personnel and support staff.
"It is awesome being able to be here and learn from a professional organization like the Bears with so much tradition," Gonzalo told ChicagoBears.com. "It's almost like a dream come true. Coming from Spain—where football is so much smaller than here in the U.S.—and being able to be here even if it's just for three days, it's an awesome experience."
Gonzalo's visit was coordinated as part of the NFL Global Markets Program. In 2021, the Bears were awarded Spain and the United Kingdom as International Home Markets. Through the initiative, the Bears can directly engage with fans and sell sponsorship rights in both markets.
Gonzalo is the offensive coordinator and associate head coach of the Badalona Dracs in Spain's top football league, which is comprised of 12 clubs in two six-team conferences. He previously coached with the Barcelona Dragons in the European League of Football in 2021-22.
"Having Xavi (pronounced CHA-vee) here really is good for both parties," said Bears Head Coach Matt Eberflus, "really for him to be able to learn from us all the details of how we go about our business; the operation and then the football side of it, the scheme side if it. [And for the Bears] it's always great to see how other people do things."