AS Roma finished second or third in the last 5 seasons. They started this season worse than expected and have only 3 wins in 7 matches, but I believe that they're at least on the same level from last season. They sold Allison, Nainggolan and Strootman and replaced them with Olsen, N'Zonzi, Cristante and Pastore. Justin Kluivert is good investment for the future, but he's already important player who can make the difference. Roma played awful against Real, but their performances improved recently and the win against Lazio means much. The selfconfidence is getting back and we can expect the real Roma in the next matches. They will be without Kolarov and Pastore in Empoli, so youngster Luca Pellegrini will start as left back. Perroti is back in the squad, so Di Francesco will have enough options in the midfield.
Empoli returned from Serie B as champions. It's normal that their goal will be to survive and their main rivals for that are Parma, Chievo, SPAL, Frosinone and Cagliari. Empoli are currently 18th with only one win, but they are not that bad. They create chances, but their efficiency is low. Francesco Caputo scored 27 goals in Serie B last season and he's their main weapon in attack after they sold Alfredo Donnaruma, the second best scorer in Serie B last season. Empoli have young squad and veterans as central defenders. They stopped Roma at 0:0 two years ago and will be satisfied to repeat that result.
I believe that Roma are in a good shape right now and the difference in quality is too big for anything else except a win for Roma. They're still under pressure, but they have experience. Dzeko will be dominant in the air, while Under is too quick for Empoli's defense. Roma have several tall players who will play (Fazio, Manolas, N'Zonzi, Dzeko, Lorenzo Pellegrini) and will be very dangerous from corners. They're also better on the field, so I expect a win for the visitors.