A single-step organic-free process has been evolved to prepare phosphate-modified titania, a nanomaterial, from titanium oxysulphate solution. The adsorption of phosphate ions from aqueous solution onto titania has been studied by XRD, XPS, and DRIFT which show strong adsorption of phosphate, as Ti-O-P on the surface of titania. An increase in crystallinity and decrease in surface area are observed with calcination temperature. XPS results reveal a pentavalent oxidation state for P and the substitution of P for oxygen. The phosphate-modified titania displays good thermal stability, an essential property required for the application as catalyst and active support.