After done with the group stage, my impression is that FIFA World Cup 2018 easily has the lowest ratio of goals scored per game in the history of FIFA World Cup.

Is my impression correct?

My search on internet only gives me the statistics for goals scored per game for the whole tournament, not just group stage:

Goals scored

Now I am interested to compare the statistics for group stage, but not the whole tournament.

up vote 6 down vote accepted

Since the introduction of 32-team group stage (GS) system in 1998:

 year | number of goals during GS | average number of goals during GS
____________________________________________________________________ 
 2018 |           122             |               2.54
 2014 |           136             |               2.83
 2010 |           101             |               2.10
 2006 |           117             |               2.44
 2002 |           130             |               2.71
 1998 |           126             |               2.63

So, your impression is not correct. 122 goals were scored during the groups stage of the 2018 World Cup and it was exactly equal to the number of goals expected to be scored during the group stage (136 + 101 + 117 + 130 + 126) / 5 = 122.

Sources: 1998, 2002, 2006, 2010, 2014, 2018

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