The sides enter Tuesday's match level on points following Everton's 1-1 draw with West Ham United, though the Toffees are a place better off than United by virtue of a superior goal difference.
Wins over Burnley, Brighton and Hove Albion and Newcastle in the reverse fixture have ensured that relegation is no longer a serious threat, but the recent FA Cup loss to Liverpool's kids and Saturday's tame draw with West Ham shows there is still plenty of work to do.
The ultimate aim for Ancelotti is to get his side jostling for position in the top half of the table, and with a run of games against Newcastle, Watford and Crystal Palace to come, there is a real chance to get some points on the board.
In Dominic Calvert-Lewin the Merseyside outfit have a player in real form, with the 22-year-old being backed by skipper Seamus Coleman to earn a place in England's next squad following a run of 11 goals in 21 matches, including the equaliser against West Ham.
In fact, since Ancelotti's first Premier League game in charge of Everton on Boxing Day, only Manchester City's Sergio Aguero (six) has scored more goals in the competition than Calvert-Lewin (four).
Keeping Calvert-Lewin quiet will be a tough task, but Newcastle did manage to pick up a first clean sheet in seven attempts last time out against a toothless Chelsea side.
That was one of just two defeats Everton have suffered in 14 meetings with United, but they enter this latest showdown on equal footing.
Everton Premier League form: DWWLWD
Everton form (all competitions): WWLLWD
Newcastle United Premier League form: WLLLDW
Newcastle United form (all competitions): LLDDWW
Jetro Willems became the latest Newcastle player to pick up an injury early on in the win over Chelsea - a setback Bruce later described as "horrendous" for his side.
Matt Ritchie was rushed back into the side and could start Tuesday's match, with Bruce otherwise thin of options in the backline.
As for Everton, they were without Gylfi Sigurdsson against West Ham and this midweek match may come too soon for the Icelandic midfielder.
Anthony Gordon was introduced at half time against West Ham and is pushing for a start here.
Everton possible starting lineup:
Pickford; Sidibe, Holgate, Mina, Baines; Bernard, Sigurdsson, Delph, Gordon; Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin
Newcastle United possible starting lineup:
Dubravka; Krafth, Fernandez, Lascelles, Clark, Ritchie; Almiron, Hayden, Shelvey, Saint-Maximin; Joelinton
We say: Everton 0-0 Newcastle United
A place in the top half of the Premier League awaits the winner, and on the basis of the season so far there is little to choose between them. Newcastle kept a rare shutout last time out and we are backing them to do likewise on Tuesday.