Diego Simeone’s men blew their chance of pulling further away from the rest of the pack and were undone by a spirited Levante side who had goalkeeper Dani Cardenas to thank for putting in a man-of-the-match performance with a string of great saves.
The hosts lined up in their favoured 3-5-2 formation, with Joao Felix and Luis Suarez leading the line, but were unable to break down their visitors who were playing them for the second time this week.
Atletico Madrid began the game as the better side but were unable to test their visitors who were unfortunate to go ahead in the 9th minute when Jose Morales shot wide following after being sent clear following a fast counter.
Despite the early scare, Atletico continued to dominate their visitors. But it was Levante who took the lead against the run of play in the 30th minute through Jose Morales. The Spanish striker beat Oblak with a shot that deflected off Felipe after receiving the ball on the edge of the area.
The goal was the sixth time Atletico were conceding first in nine La Liga fixtures, with Simeone’s men ending the first half trailing by a goal.
They came out flying in the second period and could have gone level in the 59th minute. But the post denied Suarez after the Uruguayan beat the wall with a brilliant free-kick.
Joao Felix was the next Atletico Madrid player to go close, but the youngster was denied by a brilliant Dani Cardenas save. The youngster was on hand in the third minute of added time to deny Thomas Lemar a certain goal.
Levante sealed their win in the 95th minute through a De Frutos goal, scored from the halfway line after Oblak had come out for a corner.
The result means that Real Madrid can Atletico Madrid’s lead at the top to three points with a win against Valladolid later in the day.