DEAN KEATES insists manager's can't teach passion but the Reds boss fired a warning to players who show a lack of desire in the bid to avoid relegation.

Wrexham were booed off the pitch following last Saturday's 2-1 home defeat to fellow strugglers Aldershot which left the 20th placed Reds just two points above the drop zone.

Keates was hugely critical of his players in his post-match press conference, saying they did not show enough pride and passion in a woeful performance.

A committed midfielder during his playing career, ex-Wrexham captain Keates wore his heart on his sleeve and managed to finish the goalless draw against Newport in October 2011 despite breaking a collar bone as player-boss Andy Morrell had used his full compliment of substitutes.

With that attitude when it comes to battling against adversity, it is no wonder that Keates says players won't have a future at The Racecourse if they aren't up for the fight.

"I have never been on a course, I have never taken a football session or never been coached in a football session in all my years where you have to bring the passion and the pride," said Keates.

"They are the fundamental life-skills for me and they come from within; that is your own characteristics, your own DNA.

"There was a lack of that in our last league game and that is something that is a concern.

"Ultimately, if it happens again it will cost players their careers and their futures at this football club. It is not good enough.

"As much as you don't want to, you can accept defeats but it is the manner of defeat and the work-rate, tempo, intensity and the biggest thing - the passion and desire - wasn't there for the last 30 minutes of the Aldershot game."

Keates says his players need "big shoulders" and must cope with the pressures of a relegation battle as well as the high expectations at the club.

"Unfortunately, as a football club we are what it says on the tin," said Keates. "We are a National League team, we have been for 12 years and it is a long, long time.

"No-one wants to address that and get that sorted more than me.

"What comes with this football club is a massive fanbase, it is a massive football club and there is a big expectation.

"You have to deal with that. If you haven't got broad shoulders, you will buckle under it.

"If the performances are not there, the effort is not there and the passion that needs to be shown for this football club is not there, I would expect people to vocalise that and people need to be told."

Keates, who returned for a second spell as manager in October, accepts that he and his management team are not immune from criticism with Wrexham, who return to action at home to Woking on Saturday after a weekend off, battling to avoid relegation to National League North.

"We are all open to it because it is not good enough," said Keates. "As a group, we need to be better.

"The football club shouldn't be where it is but it is where it is.

"It needs addressing and it will be addressed."