Real Madrid lies seven points behind Atletico Madrid’s La Liga leaders after Levante defeated their 10-man side.After nine minutes, Real had defender Eder Militao sent-off, but they took the lead shortly after by Marco Asensio.
Jose Luis Morales levelled for Levante and with 12 minutes left, Roger Marti netted the winner to make amends for his earlier penalty error.
Members Atletico, who played two games less than the hand of Zinedine Zidane, face Cadiz on Sunday (15:15 GMT).
Having missed his side’s 4-1 victory over Alaves last weekend after testing positive for coronavirus, Real boss Zidane returned to the sidelines.
In the continued absence of injured Captain Sergio Ramos, he decided to team Militao with Raphael Varane at center-back, but the partnership lasted less than 10 minutes.
Before a VAR analysis upgraded his suspension for rejecting a goalscoring chance, Militao was originally shown a yellow card for tripping Sergio Leon outside the penalty area.
As Asensio finished from the excellent through-ball of Toni Kroos, Real looked untroubled by the set-back, but the first shot of Levante captain Morales from the cross of Jorge Miramon brought things level before half-time.
When Thibaut Courtois saved his spot-kick, Marti looked to have squandered the opportunity to win the match, before he punished Real with a powerful, low shot after a corner.
It was a first loss for defending champions Real in 10 La Liga matches, but they lost three of their last four games in all competitions, including their shock Copa del Rey exit to Alcoyano Third Division.