Lorenzo Pellegrini celebrated his new Roma contract with a goal and Henrikh Mkhitaryan pounced on the rebound after Tammy Abraham rattled the Empoli crossbar.
The Giallorossi welcomed Pellegrini back after he missed the 3-2 derby defeat to Lazio through suspension, starting Ebrima Darboe and Chris Smalling to rest Bryan Cristante and Roger Ibanez. Empoli were capable of beating Juventus away and losing at home to Venezia, so rather unpredictable.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan saw his shot charged down, while Andrea Pinamonti flicked a cross onto the side-netting and saw another effort deflected over by Gianluca Mancini.
Empoli continued to threaten, Filippo Bandinelli’s header over the bar from a very promising position, but there was bad news when Pinamonti limped off with a knee problem.
Roma got a foothold in the game after that and took the lead, Pellegrini celebrating his new contract by running onto the Mkhitaryan through ball and firing into the far bottom corner with a slight deflection.
The Giallorossi doubled their lead after the restart, as Tammy Abraham stole the ball in midfield, smashed a scorcher off the underside of the crossbar and Mkhitaryan turned in the rebound.
Abraham was denied again, this time by a tough one-handed Guglielmo Vicario save, and Pellegrini’s header turned a Rick Karsdorp cross just wide.
Petar Stojanovic practically cleared off the line from Abraham’s header on a corner and Patrick Cutrone’s glancing header on a Bajrami cross tested Rui Patricio.
Roma 2-0 Empoli
Pellegrini 42 (R), Mkhitaryan 48 (R)