It didn't take long for new D.C. United managing partner Jason Levien to have his first meeting with D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray. It took place just last week.

What's more encouraging for proponents of a new stadium for his team is that the two are scheduled to get together again Friday.

"The analogy I would draw is to a race horse that's in the starting gate," Levien said in his first interview since his investment in United was announced July 10. "We've been waiting for them to pull the gate so we can go. Now we just want to take off. Our biggest priority, one, two and three, is figuring out the stadium issue."

The District Council is also on board with the mayor. Both parties appear to recognize United's newfound financial strength.

"You can tell they're behind us," Levien said. "You can tell they want to collaborate on getting somewhere. That was the initial meeting, and we know there are many, many hurdles to go. But we're following up this week. We're going to start rolling up our sleeves and talking about the details of how we put an action plan together."

Levien said the club is also exploring potential signings, if the right deal comes along, to bolster D.C. United's on-field ambitions. Improvements to the RFK Stadium fan experience also should be forthcoming.

"It's gratifying to start," Levien said. "I want to see results. I'm trying to understand that I have to be patient with that myself. But I'm thrilled that we're out there and running the race."

- Craig Stouffer