How long does it take to make what Messi earns in a week?

Sarah Coles
Messi makes £1 million in a week
Messi makes £1 million in a week

Sporting stars can easily rack up a million quid for a week's work, but how many years would it take you to match their pay packets? A new study has revealed how long each profession takes to rack up £1 million, and while Ronaldo manages it in less than six days, and Lewis Hamilton in just over a week, making £1 million is just slightly harder work for the rest of us.

See also: The shocking celebrity sports gender pay gap

See also: Is this the worst job in Britain?

See also: The 'gig economy' will kill your nice, secure job

The study, by Expertmarket, found that Ronaldo was the highest earner overall, taking 5.68 days to make £1 million. He is followed by Lionel Messi at 5.96 days, American footballer Joe Flacco at 7.23 days, Lewis Hamilton at 7.57 days and Sebastian Vettel at 7.96 days.

Female sporting stars take longer, but the highest paid, Ronda Rousey, still racks up £1 million in just over a month - at 31.84 days. She is followed by Serena Williams at 35.74 days, stock car racer Danica Patrick at 40.31 days, tennis player Agnieszka Radwanska at 61.24 and Maria Sharapova at 167.41 days.

And while it's revealing how much less female sports stars get paid than the men, it's hard to feel an enormous amount of pity for them considering how long it takes those of us without sporting prowess to rack up £1 million.

The rest of us

Unsurprisingly the group who get to £1 million the fastest are Chief Executives, who have racked up their first million in eight years. It's worth bearing in mind, however, that nowadays, it's pretty difficult to stay at the helm for much longer than this. They are followed by Marketing and Sales Directors, who take an average of 11.38 years, and airline pilots who take 11.51 years.

Of the more normal professions, doctors and lawyers can hit these heady heights well before the end of their career. It takes a doctor an average of 12.76 years to make £1 million, and a lawyer 16.91 years. Those in IT take an average of 21.7 years, and accountants 23.01 years.

Further down the spending leagues, police officers take an average of 24.93 years, teachers 25.64 years, a fire service officer 30.29 years, and nurses 31.09 years.

At the bottom of the pile are shelf stackers who take 60.66 years, hairdressers who take 65.56, and bar staff, who would have to work for 72.82 years in order to make £1 million.

The gap between men and women is clear for normal jobs too. Men on the board, for example, take an average of 7.08 years to make £1 million, while women take 11.99 years.

Among doctors, men take 11.49 years, while women take 15.28 years. And within the legal profession, men take 14.73 years while women take 18.75 years. The average women takes 35.44 years to make £1 million - while the average man takes 31.74 years.

If you're keen to make a million as fast as possible, therefore, it appears there are three routes: you need to climb the greasy pole at work; study for years for a profession in medicine or law; or suddenly discover sporting excellence. Ideally you'll also be a man.