His football career began at 1986, to Proleter FC, where he stays until 1991. He played for three years at Red Star (until 1994). With Red Star, he won the Yugoslav national championship with FK Crvena Zvezda in 1991/92, the season after joined from first club FK Proleter, for whom he scored 26 goals in 92 games. He was a Yugoslav Cup winner with the Belgrade club in 1993 and departed the following season for Greece and Olympiacos after registering 16 goals in 30 top-flight games, where he stays until 1999.
While at Olympiacos CFP he won the Greek championship in 1997, 1998, and the double in 1999, having his best campaign in the second of those title triumphs, claiming 26 goals in 32 matches. He was a member of Olympiacos squad in 1999-99 UEFA Champions League, when his team achieved its greatest success in European competition while they reached the quarter finals and being eliminated by Juventus.
His next step was with the Italian club Torino Calcio the following season, although he failed to find the net in 19 games, nine as a substitute in his first season in Serie A. Having failed to break into the first team the following term, he returned to Greece with FC Aris Thessaloniki, before he signed for AEK Athens FC in early 2002.
In January 2002 Ilija Ivić came to AEK FC, where he closed his football career. He played 48 matches and he scored 18 times. His team finished second in the Greek Championship, equal points with Olympiacos, however he reached with his team the Final in the Greek Cup, where AEK met his past team Olympiacos. Ivic scored the winning goal in the 2002 Greek Cup final for AEK against Olympiacos but refused, for sentimental reasons, to celebrate, having played for the opposition earlier in his career.The following season, he played a considerable part in AEK finishing third in the Alpha Ethniki after scoring nine goals in 20 games. In the UEFA Champions League he featured in five of AEK's six drawn games in the first group stage.
On June 2004 he accepted the proposal of AEK FC administration and assumed the position of Technical Manager. Ivic stayed for almost three years as the Technical Manager of AEK FC and during his career had a successful choices of players despite the small budget. On February 2007 he resigned and appealed that he had some collaboration problems with the current manager of AEK FC, Lorenzo Serra Ferrer.
On June 2007 he accepted the proposal of Petros Kokkalis, Management Director Of Olympiacos FC and assumed the position of Technical Manager.
He is married to Greek fitness instructor Eleni Petroulaki, together they have three kids: Anna Maria(3yrs old) and 17 month old twins Mila and Dorothea. Vladimir Ivić who plays for PAOK Thessaloniki is his younger brother.
He resigned as Technical Director of Olympiacos on May 7, 2008.
They also resigned from Red Star in the end of 2008/09 season because of financial problems of the club.