With finals footy firmly knocking on the door, the AFL is beginning to prepare its other annual end-of-season festivities. And among the most important is the naming of the All-Australian side for Season 2015.

The selectors have revealed the initial 40-man squad for the team – a ceremonial side of players selected as the best in their position for the year – with the list to be subsequently whittled down to a final 22-man side at a later date.

The squad itself contains very few surprises, with reigning premier Hawthorn copping the most selections, having six players selected. The young upstart Western Bulldogs have 5 players in the list, as do the ladder leading Western Australian contingent in Fremantle and the West Coast Eagles.

Sydney only had two entries in the 40, despite finishing fourth on the ladder, equal with cross town rivals Greater Western Sydney who also had two players despite finishing the season in eleventh place.

Meanwhile the struggling Essendon side put a bright full stop in an otherwise exceedingly bleak year, with one selection in the squad coupling with their dramatic victory over Collingwood in Sunday afternoon’s last game of the regular season.

In all, 21 players selected have not attained All-Australian status in the past, with the most-capped players coming from the Pies’ Scott Pendlebury and Dane Swan, each of whom have reached the accolade 5 times in the past.

The full squad is as follows.

Adelaide: Eddie Betts, Patrick Dangerfield, Rory Laird, Taylor Walker.

Collingwood: Scott Pendlebury, Dane Swan.

Essendon: Michael Hurley.

Fremantle: Nathan Fyfe, Stephen Hill, Garrick Ibbotson, David Mundy, Lachie Neale.

GWS Giants: Jeremy Cameron, Heath Shaw.

Hawthorn: Shaun Burgoyne, Josh Gibson, Jack Gunston, Jordan Lewis, Sam Mitchell, Cyril Rioli.

North Melbourne: Todd Goldstein, Shaun Higgins.

Port Adelaide: Robbie Gray, Chad Wingard.

Richmond: Brett Deledio, Dustin Martin, Alex Rance, Jack Riewoldt.

Sydney Swans: Dan Hannebery, Josh P. Kennedy.

West Coast: Andrew Gaff, Josh J. Kennedy, Jeremy McGovern, Nic Naitanui, Matt Priddis.

Western Bulldogs: Matthew Boyd, Luke Dahlhaus, Robert Murphy, Jake Stringer, Easton Wood.

Photo: James Eisby/AFL Media via Getty Images.

via AFL.com.au.