Both sides were relegated from the Premier League last season, but they have experienced differing fortunes since then.
Their 23 goals in 20 league matches mean they have the joint-second lowest goal haul in the top half of the table and was a big factor in the board's decision to let Ivic go after only a few months in charge.
The Serbian boss was relieved of his duties after Watford's 2-0 loss to Huddersfield Town last time out. The result leaves them four points behind Bournemouth, who currently occupy the final automatic promotion place.
A win against table-toppers Norwich would narrow the gap to Daniel Farke's side down to six points and reignite Watford's push for an instant Premier League return.
The Canaries have been flying of late. Five consecutive victories have seen them establish a five-point advantage over their nearest rivals and threaten to run away with the second tier title.
Finland international striker Teemu Pukki has rediscovered his scoring touch with 10 strikes to his name, making him the division's fourth deadliest marksman.
The German is now getting the best out of 23-year-old Argentine winger Emi Buendia, and the whole side is reaping the rewards.
When the likes of Todd Cantwell, Buendia and Pukki are in full flight, there are not many Championship teams who can contain them, and a return to the top tier of English football is starting to look inevitable.
Watford Championship form: DLWWDL
Norwich City Championship form: LWWWWW
Xisco will be without a handful of first-team stars at the beginning of his reign.
Winger Isaac Success is expected to be out until March with a ruptured Achilles tendon, midfielder Tom Dele-Bashiru is out for the season with a cruciate ligament injury, and full-back Adam Masina will not be available for selection until February due to a cracked tendon.
Cantwell scored his first goal of the season against Cardiff City last time out, and the 22-year-old attacking midfielder will be hoping to build on that over the weekend.
Watford possible starting lineup:
Foster; Ngakia, Troost-Ekong, Kabasele, Femenia; Chalobah, Cleverley; Sarr, Garner, Sema; Deeney
Norwich City possible starting lineup:
McGovern; Aarons, Zimmermann, Hanley, Sorensen; Skipp, McLean; Cantwell, Buendia, Martin; Pukki
We say: Watford 1-2 Norwich City
Norwich have scored two goals in each of their last five outings, and we are backing them to do the same on Saturday. Xisco will not have had much time to work with his new squad and has been given a tough task to kickstart his tenure.
The Canaries are in scintillating form and are unlikely to take their foot off the gas anytime soon. A narrow victory for Farke's men is the most likely outcome in this festive feast and it could prove pivotal in the Championship promotion race.