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The Sweden international endured a turbulent one-season stay in Catalunya before returning to Italy to link up with the Rossoneri, for whom he has become a key player

Zlatan Ibrahimovic has expressed his gratitude to AC Milan CEO Adriano Galliani for rescuing him from Barcelona in the summer of 2010.

In his first game back after a three-game suspension, the Sweden international scored a stunning hat-trick to secure the Rossoneri three points against Palermo, a game which coach Massimiliano Allegri had described beforehand as one of the most decisive of the club's season.

The treble took Ibrahimovic's tally for the Serie A campaign to 18 and the forward revealed afterwards that he hopes to score many more as he remains very grateful to his employers for bringing him back to Italy after his turbulent one-season stay in Catalunya.

"Galliani said to Barcelona he would not return without me," the former Juventus and Inter man is quoted as saying by his club's official website.

"He gave me so much confidence and I owe him a lot. I am very fond of Galliani and I think he feels the same about me."

Ibrahimovic admitted that he is still disappointed at having been forced to sit out last weekend's 1-1 draw with title rivals Juventus but he is now trying to focus his attention on Tuesday night's second leg of Milan's Champions League last-16 tie against Arsenal at the Emirates.

"I'm very happy now, after three rounds of suspension," he enthused. "I'm back and everything went very well for me and the team that is playing well and with so much confidence.

"We're playing like we want; we are always dangerous in attack. It's my second hat-trick in Italy [but] the goals are just a bonus for me.

"I regret not having been there with Juve. I suffered and I paid for it. But the team still did well without me and deserved to win last Saturday.

"Now, though, there's another game on Tuesday and we hope to repeat what we did today [Saturday]."

Ibrahimovic joined Barcelona in 2009 but never settled at Camp Nou and had a falling-out with coach Pep Guardiola.

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